Please join us for our 8th Annual Open Studio Show on Sunday, October 10th from 11am to 4pm. The fall season, composed of crisp air and colorful foliage is our favorite time to welcome our friends to the studio. Additionally, Columbus Day weekend is the perfect time to drive to New Hampshire. Make sure to enjoy one of New England’s most beautiful times of the year and the quaint village of West Swanzey. Complete your trip by visiting its covered bridges and rushing Ashuelot River. Most importantly, we thank you for all of your support over the years and look forward to seeing you.
Essay – “Kanye” by Cole Traynor to his dad:
The first time I saw Kanye West he was not my favorite musical artist. It was 4:45 am on June 14 2008. Originally scheduled for 8pm, the set was moved to 2:45. It was part of his Glow in the Dark Tour and he wanted it to look its best. When he took to the stage, 2 hours late because Pearl Jam’s set ran an hour late and he couldn’t load in until they dismantled, the sun was coming up, ruining his light show, and he was pelted by a barrage of water bottles, glow sticks, and chants of “Kanye Sucks”. This was the death of the Old Kanye.
Kanye broke into the musical landscape because of his incredible production skills. The most high profile was his work on Jay Z’s massive hit record The Blueprint. He invented a sound dubbed “chipmunk soul”, pitching up soul samples and splicing them up to create what would become the most common sound of the decade. Despite his brilliance behind the board, even his record label wouldn’t support him as a rapper and solo artist. He kept working long hours crafting hit after hit for other artists, until it nearly killed him. Leaving a late night recording session he fell asleep at the wheel and collided with another vehicle. He had reconstructive surgery and his jaw was wired to his face. Only two weeks later, still with his jaw wired shut, he recorded “Through the Wire”. His label still didn’t support him so he financed the music video himself. Upon release, the song was a massive success and Kanye the artist had arrived.
His first album, The College Dropout, completely changed hip hop. A genre built on street cred and gangster bonafides was now topped by the son of a college professor who wore pink polo shirts and rapped about God. On his second album, Late Registration, he evolved his chipmunk soul sound, which had been copied by almost every producer, by enlisting composer Jon Brion to help him craft strings and orchestral arrangements. The success of his second effort lead to an opening spot on U2’s world tour. He studied U2’s ability to make arena filling anthems. On his third album, Graduation, he took the lessons he learned from Bono and the Edge and again completely reinvented his sound to incorporate synths and electronic sounds while becoming one of the world’s biggest stars. He was on top of the world
Now is where things take a turn. Right before his victory lap, The Glow in the Dark Tour, he and his fiancee split up and his mother, best friend, and manager, Donda West died. He buried the loss and heartbreak with his workload. He toured the world with an exhaustive schedule and was embraced for his genius. The Bonnaroo debacle was the first time the workload and personal loss caught up with him. After the tour he retreated to the studio to deal with the end of his two relationships. The world’s most popular rapper made an album more influenced by Ian Curtis and Phil Collins than Biggie and Tupac. There is almost no rapping on 808s and Heartbreak. Instead he puts his emotions through an autotune processor and again changes the musical landscape. Initially viewed as a flop, 808s would prove to be the single most impactful album to what is pop music in 2018. I bought you this record because I think it’s his work that you would enjoy the most. It is also vital to listen to where he was artistically and emotionally before he made what is generally considered his masterpiece, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy.
From here you probably are familiar with the major news beats. At the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards, Kanye interrupts Taylor Swift accepting the award for Best Female Music video. He became the butt of every late night joke. Every other musical artist said they were disgusted by the outburst. President Obama, who had met with Kanye and his mother to get their support for his presidential run, called him a “jackass”. He cancels his planned tour with Lady Gaga and moves to Rome to escape the media. He then sets up camp in Hawaii to make his musical comeback. This is one of the most expensive albums ever made costing over 3 million dollars to make. He rarely slept during its creation, instead taking short power naps so he could work almost all day every day. Although all his albums are heavily collaborative, this is by far his most as it features countless legends, Elton John, John Legend, Jay Z, Bon Iver, the Wu-Tang Clan among others. West felt that his life depended on the success of this album. What he made is not only among the best rap albums of all time, but among the greatest albums of all time.
How do you follow up an instant classic? Kanye makes Yeezus. He calls Rick Rubin and Daft Punk to help him invent another new sound. Shortly before his death, Lou Reed wrote a review of the album, “He’s really trying to raise the bar. No one’s near doing what he’s doing, it’s not even on the same planet.” Kanye is the contemporary Lou Reed. He is also Nina Simone (an incredibly difficult personality who challenges politics), Michael Jackson (a pop pioneer steering the sounds of modern music), and David Bowie (a rock star alien who is always reinventing himself). It is currently Yeezy Season. Kanye has produced four albums in the last four weeks and has one more coming next week.
I want you to have these three epic collections of songs because I think you’ll enjoy them, because Kanye is my favorite musical artist, and because you are the Kanye West of oil painting. While you haven’t interrupted budding country singers on stage at award shows, you share similarities. You both had laser beam focus that enabled you to succeed against the odds at a young age and are fueled by a desire to create new art that you can be proud of and the world will enjoy. You are the greatest in the world at what you do and I hope you can take some inspiration from Kanye to do exactly what you want with your gifts. (written by Cole Traynor)
“My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy” by Kayne West, 2010
“The Humanity of Christ” by John C. Traynor, 2018
BEAT the WINTER BLUES… take a Painting Class this SPRING!
***A few spots available to paint with John C. Traynor this spring.
For more information, please call 603-357-7437 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
John’s paintings have arrived!
Celebrating the arts every Memorial Day Weekend in beautiful Paso Robles, California, PASO ARTSFEST takes place on Saturday, May 28 and features an Outdoor Fine Art Show & Sale filled with some of the most talented plein air artists in the US and beyond, a Local Stars Quick-Draw, the Kids Art Smart Zone, CREATEspace for adults, live music and performances and the best wine bar in the area.
Paso Robles is located on the Central Coast of California, almost exactly midway between Los Angeles and San Francisco and 30 minutes from the Pacific coast.
The Festival in the Park is ONE DAY ONLY!
Saturday, May 28, 2016
See “Events” tab for more fun events throughout the weekend.
NEW Gallery in Bernardsville, New Jersey.
35 Mill Street
American Art Review Ad – May/June 2016
Open Studio Show
Saturday, July 30th from 1pm to 5pm
On view through August 30th by appointment only. Contact us at: email@example.com or (603) 357-7437
at Haley and Steele Gallery
162 Newbury Street in Boston MA
Reception Saturday, April 9th, 2016
from 10:30am to 5pm
on view through April 23rd
John has an unique ability for portraying the human art form and capturing the personalities of his subjects. Come view for yourself the emotion and stories behind each painting in this collection.
“I visited John’s studio last year and was completely swept away by a group of figurative paintings he was working on. I told John I had to have these paintings in our gallery to show this new direction he discovered. I’m truly fortunate he agreed to a one man show featuring these new figurative works at our gallery in Boston”.
– Bill Craig
Owner of Haley & Steele Gallery
American Art Review Ad – March/April 2016 – Upcoming show in Boston.
at The Haley & Steele Gallery
162 Newbury Street in Boston MA
Reception Saturday, April 9th, 2016
from 10:30am to 5pm on view through April 23rd
Link to larger view of ad: AAR Mar/Apr2016 Ad
John Traynor Demonstration at AAPL 87th Exhibition
John was ask to do a demonstration for the American Artists Professional League below is a link to his demonstration. Enjoy!