Friday, August 3, 2012

Alberto Vargas, Earl Moran, Art Frahm, Tom of Finland and Me


Alberto Vargas Pin-upsOne of the things that been trying to do with my art is study the human form and tell a story and sometimes I just wanted to figure studies.  To that end I bought and looked at vintage pinup photographs of both men and women and even invented some of the figures myself using what I know about anatomy and portrait painting.  Here are some of my pinup paintings of men and women.  What's always surprising to me is that a majority of the female figures have been bought actually by women and the majority of the male figures had been bought by men.

Sometimes artists and art historians and even art critics make distinctions between high and low art.  When I first started studying art history, one of the first things that I noticed was that the great artists like the Velasquez and Titian, and Giorgione were all painters who did a series of nudes, such as the Venus of Urbino.   

And I know that painters like matinee were seeking to critique the whole history of art history by making the paintings they made.  Nevertheless, I was struck by the idea that these great master painters were still painting naked women.  I always felt the little bit weird about it, especially when I was 10 or 11 years old and I was looking through my parent’s art history books to look at naked people.


When I was growing up in the 1960s and 1970s there was a popular art called pinup.  The so-called pinup artists people like Alberto Vargas, Earl Moran and Art Frahm were artists who seem to master the human form but also tell a bit of the story.  Today there are even gay male pinup artists who've been around for years such as Tom of Finland and others.
 

 I'm not sure what this says about our culture and even things such as the male gaze, or the idea of making gay art but I really like the idea that in a way pinup art is kind of subversive.  Here are some of my pinup paintings that are directed at both male and female audiences and an audience known as bears who are yummy large men.

Tank Top by Kenney Mencher oil on masonite 10x8 inches Titanium by Kenney Mencher oil on masonite 14x11 inches My Best Friend's Mom by Kenney Mencher oil on masonite 14x11 inches Glad You Came, oil paint and spray paint on canvas mounted to masonite panel 10"x8" by Kenney Mencher Beach Head original oil painting 16"x20"x1.5" inches by artist Kenney Mencher Part of Me, oil paint on masonite panel 10"x8" by Kenney Mencher Back in Time, oil paint and spray paint on canvas mounted to masonite panel 10"x8" by Kenney Mencher A Memoir of Gambling original oil painting 14x11 inches by artist Kenney Mencher Barry de Treasure 11"x14" oilpaint and sheet music on masonite panel by Kenney Mencher Marshall Law, 10"x8" oilpaint and newspaper on masonite panel  by Kenney Mencher Bad Juju (Alternate Cover)by artist Kenney Mencher  24"x18"x1.5"  (original book cover for published book) Some Nights, oil paint on masonite panel 10"x8" by Kenney Mencher Wide Awake, oil paint and spray paint on canvas mounted to masonite panel 14"x11" by Kenney Mencher Nudes, a folio of two watercolors on Rives BFK each 10"x8"and 6"x10" by Kenney Mencher Candy Striper or Candy Stripper, oil on panel  20"x20"x.5" inches by Kenney Mencher Bad Juju by artist Kenney Mencher  40"x30"x1.5"  (original book cover for published book)



Per Haps, 5"x7" masonite panel by Kenney Mencher Bearish, oil on masonite 10"x8" by Kenney Mencher Woosh 8"x10" oilpaint, architectural rendering, mounted to masonite panel by Kenney Mencher Sy Luntz 8"x8" oilpaint, watercolor, paper, mounted to masonite panel by Kenney Mencher Barry de Treasure 11"x14" oilpaint and sheet music on masonite panel by Kenney Mencher Marshall Law, 10"x8" oilpaint and newspaper on masonite panel  by Kenney Mencher Trip by Kenney Mencher oil on linen canvas 48x60x1.5

Warren Peace 11"x14" oilpaint, spray paint, canvas, mounted to masonite panel by Kenney Mencher
Warren Peace 11"x14" oilpaint, spray paint, canvas, mounted ...
kmencher $145.00 USD