Don Ed Hardy @ Rena Bransten GalleryTattoo // Friday, 28 Oct 2011
We recently stopped by the new exhibition of our June 2011 cover artist, Don Ed Hardy, a new series of sculptures and paintings on display at Rena Bransten Gallery in San Francisco. The show evolved from Hardy's goal of making two thousand dragons with no preplanned composition to explore pure abstract elements along with recognizable forms.
The story behind the show is actually very interesting...
The paintings in Don Ed Hardy’s upcoming show at Rena Bransten Gallery evolved from the monumental 4 x 500 foot work 2000 Dragons, executed in the millennial year (a Dragon Year in the Asian zodiac). This was a decisive turning point for the artist in its scale and expansive gesture, as he had spent the previous four decades in near-daily practice with the obsessive precision of intaglio printmaking, lithography, tattooing, and careful watercolors. The mission goal of making two thousand dragons with no preplanned composition freed Hardy up to explore pure abstract elements along with recognizable forms. The spontaneous works since then continue to develop intuitively at the moment of painting.
The big scroll was executed with acrylic on archival synthetic paper, which was available in huge rolls. Featherweight and durable, it was the most practical solution for a work of immense scale. The saturation of pigment into paper as an instantaneous indelible record—with little or no over painting—continues and amplifies Hardy’s works with metal plates, sumi ink, and skin. The current works further explore pure autographic expressive gesture.
All photos by Brock Fetch for Juxtapoz
Don Ed Hardy
Through December 19, 2011
Rena Bransten Gallery
San Francisco, California