The Big Elk river runs like a silver thread through my veins and Tiger Mountain chimes my heart.
My art speaks to these two worlds, my first home and my second. In all my work I turn personal history into fables where animals walk upright and speak in the voices of my friends and family. They relate their lives in small dramas – sometimes they make sense and sometimes they do not.
Ravens and rabbits, elephants and mice carry on complex relationships often reversing roles, sometimes friends, sometimes lovers, often enemies. Always in flux.
I do many things. I build little shacks. I sew wax dresses like my grandmother made and wore. I paint little houses on brushy hillsides. I make little boxes full of riddles. I make paintings of (because that is what I know, what I see) rabbits, deer and owls, crows, cats and raccoons. I dress them up and parade them under dusky skies.
What does it mean? I know, I don’t know. I notice what I notice.
I was educated on the gravel roads and foggy meadows of my youth and later in the streets and museums of New York, London, and Berlin.
I love animals I love my family I love my wife I love my friends. They are my inspiration.
I am a storyteller, a poet, an observer. I draw, I paint, I sculpt, I write.
I was a logger, a fisherman, a photographer, a teacher and a traveler.
I am simple, complex, a loner, a good neighbor and a friend. I am an uncle, a husband, a brother, and a son.
copyright: Larry Calkins, 2013