Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Fort Davis--March 2012
















The photograph on the left is of a painting I created in 2006 here in Fort Davis. It is one of a series of old adobes. The photograph on the right was taken yesterday of my set up to paint a new painting of the same adobe, now with its roof caved in. I have not used the same position as for the painting in 2006, but rather have shifted my point of view to take in the distance Dutchover-Ganados-Scobee Mountain. But with this new painting, which measures 24 x 40 inches, I want to document the adobe's ruin of this period of time.

I have come back to Fort Davis for an extended stay through the end of March. So far I have endured several days of cold, windy weather which kept me inside and not working. However, the weather has cleared now and it is warm and perfect for painting. I did take in the scenic loop last Saturday afternoon and found several sites I want to return to and create a few watercolors. Also yesterday I created a watercolor of a pour off in Musquiz Canyon on the road between Fort Davis and Alpine. I have started a morning painting in front of the Presbyterian Church of Sleeping Lion Mountain, the prominent feature of the town of Fort Davis.




Friday, February 24, 2012

RESALES OF DAVID LOREN BASS PAINTINGS

Recently I have been contacted by appraisers working on behalf of collectors of David Loren Bass art work. The appraisers need to know the current value of the art work for estate planning purposes of the client.

I have also been contacted by some collectors who want to de-access (dispose of) their David Loren Bass art work for a variety of reasons, e.g. downsizing to smaller living spaces or not having any heirs for the piece.

And, I have discovered two of my paintings, quite by accident. One was listed on eBay and another was in a consignment shop, both of which I purchased at considerably below market value and resold at current market values.

Clearly, there is a need for a service whereby collectors could contact me to resell the pieces for them.

Usually, when an artist sells his work, it is through a gallery or some other representative such as an art agent, a non-profit gallery. The art work is sent out into the world and the artist loses track of it. The art work may stay within a collection for many years. Or, it may be put out on the market for resale. This is called the secondary market. Its value is then determined by the selling agent, usually an auction house, before being put back on the market. Often collectors hope to recoup the initial investment and, if they are lucky, make a profit. Whenever, this occurs, the art work has a trail of value which will follow it as it appears and reappears on the art market.

This scenario may occur with a few of my art works. But, primarily, my paintings remain in private collections and do NOT have a value trail except for the one I have created in my archives over the years. I have increased the value of my work, whereby with each new year's output, the sales prices have gone up. This results in the previously sold paintings out in private collections accruing value. And, only I retain that information which is necessary for an appraiser, secondary market gallery, or auction house to determine a proper current market value on my art works.

I have created a new page on my website to offer this service just for collectors
who wish to resell their David Loren Bass art works. If you are a collector who wishes to use this service, please contact me for details at www.davidlorenbass.com or at 505-466-2557.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

2012 Is Turning Out to Be Busy


THE POST, south of Marathon,TX


It has been quite some time since I last posted and wanted to bring my followers and collectors up to date on what I have been up to.

First, I want to get the retina detachment out of the way. The detachment regimen being followed by my doctor here in Santa Fe is not working. He is giving me a shot in the eye every month of Avastin and the quality of sight out of the eye is not improving and may be getting worse. However, I cannot let that keep me from working and so I will continue on. I will hope that something can be done in the future.

Second, my travel and work schedule is really developing for the first part of the year. I was just down in west Texas staying a few days in Fort Davis and then a few days in Marathon. In Fort Davis I was able to complete an 18 x 24 inch oil painting I had started there last year. It is a site at the base of Sleeping Lion Mountain featuring rock formations and cacti which are strewn about among the grasses.

Moving over to Marathon for three days, I stayed in a "bunkhouse" which was more than adequate for my needs. I wanted to go over to Marathon to seek different landscapes such as the rolling grasslands, the caballos novaculite formations, and The Post, which is the city park of Marathon. It is actually an oasis south of town which features a spring which once watered the Comanche and Apache whose hunting and raiding trails traversed the area. In the 19th century a small army post was set up here to moniter the comings and goings of the Native Americans. It was closed after the railroads were established in the late 19th century. Today it is a lush, reed filled lake with cottonwoods edging it. The town of Marathon has plaqued it with historic markers and formalized it with picnic tables and rest rooms.
I also was introduced to Ike Roberts, a well respected rancher in the area and he agreed to locate some different sites for me on private ranches when I return in March to paint. I am looking forward to seeing what Ike comes up with.

One day I drove US Highway 385 south of Marathon toward Big Bend National Park, but veered off onto Texas FM Road 2627 for the drive down to Hallie Stillwell's Ranch, Store, and Hall of Fame and on to La Linda, the closed border crossing into Mexico.

This is enough for now. I can't seem to locate the downloaded photos in the position of the blog where I want them. I will return soon.


Friday, February 5, 2010

STARTING UP THE ADJUSTMENT

This week I have been in the studio attempting to start up the adjustment to my lost of sight in the right eye from the retinal detachment. And, I am going forward with several different approaches which I shall describe in subsequent postings.


First, I felt a need to start something new. As I looked around the studio, unfinished canvases abound, but I could not face completing them. The urge to create something fresh meant a different medium and ground upon which to work. I had several sheets of BFK Rives rag paper already on hand in the paper cabinet and decided this would make a good support for new work. I mounted a sheet onto the drawing table with paper tape surrounding the edges and creating a 29 x 21 inch work surface.


For these new "drawings" I anticipated using an instrument acquired last year at an Italian stationery shop in San Anselmo, CA. The store, specializing in Italian papers, inks, Murano pens, handmade journals, was going out of business. There I found this tin box containing a fat stylus about the width of my palm. Also inside the tin were a sandpaper pad for sharping and three graphite leads about 5 times thicker than leads usually associated with wooden pencils. By squeezing a release device--a sort of plunger--on the top of the stylus, it would open at the bottom to receive an insert of the graphite lead. It felt like an extension of my hand and it seemed a perfect tool to try out for this new work.


With experiences of the west Texas Chihuahuan Desert in my head and several photographs of the flora and landscape, I clasp the lead-filled stylus and start with gentle, tentative markings on the blank white sheet of paper trying to "feel" a composition based in elements of that landscape. As the composition materialized, I push the lead with a bit more firmness and certainty to make the marks more definite and assured so the composition emerges with clarity. Looking at what I had done, I feel it needs color. But what medium?


I think about watercolor washes, but decide against them as the watercolor might be too delicate

and its dampness would wrinkle the paper despite it being taped down to the table. I decide on oil crayon which I have in plentiful supply. It has more substance than the watercolor and its marks perfectly complement the dark graphite scribblings.


As with the graphite stylus, I start putting color onto the surface with delicate, deft markings leaving just enough color to make later more substantial with additional pressure. I distribute the colors over the surface, and build them without regard to the local color of the actual object being depicted. I alternate between this abstract use of color with additional markings of the dark graphite, sometimes dilineating edges, emphasizing forms and compostional directions. As the oil crayon/graphite surface of myriad colors thicken, I take the lightest of the oil crayons and mark over intense colors, sometimes rubbing with my finger to blend the colors and make them more subtle and relational.


At some point, I decide to move the "drawing" from its taped-down position on the table so that I can "see" the composition more clearly. I tape it to the studio wall so that I can step back and see the piece in its entirety and from a further distance than where it was on the table. I can see areas that need adjustments--more emphasis here, some dimishment there, graphite highlighting along forms, a bit less intense color and some softening of intense colors. Stepping back, looking, adjusting, adding, assessing--all acts which result in the completion of the piece.


See an illustration of the completed piece in the Blog just before this one. I had intended to place this illustration at the end of this entry; however, I could not compute it properly and it ended up at the beginning. Sorry.


The following identification should accompany the piece: CHIHUAHUAN DESERT STUDY 22, 2010 Oil Crayon/Graphite on Paper 29 x 21 Inches.


The second approach in this adjustment period, and the most scary, is assessing the unfinished Pinto Canyon paintings I started last year at this time during my stay at the Chinati Hot Springs, south of Marfa, TX. I had started 4 canvases and I liked what I had done. I will blog later about what all is involved with these pieces.


Thursday, December 3, 2009

ARTIST AND COLLECTOR RELATIONS

I received a telephone call last night, December 3, 2009, from Martha and Bob Thomas who currently divide their time between Warrenton, Virginia and Ramseur, North Carolina. The call prompts this reflection on how artists and collectors can develop a relationship.

It was in a city park in Asheboro, North Carolina where I first met Martha and Bob Thomas. The town was sponsoring a spring art fair where I had come to sell my paintings in a make-shift booth alongside my Japanese pickup truck. Having just completed a Master of Fine Arts in Painting at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, located about 40 miles up Highway 220 from Asheboro, I was anxiously seeking any venue for sales of my work to fulfill a goal of being a painter who survives solely from those sales.

When Martha and Bob strolled by they looked at the paintings to see bucolic landscapes of North Carolina's Piedmont Region displayed alongside exotic images of North Africa, specifically Morocco. I think the anomaly of seeing such disparate images in this setting stirred their curiosity and we struck up a conversation.

They had once been to Morocco back in the early 70's, as I recall. I was living there at that time working as a teacher of Art, English, and Humanities at the Kenitra American High School. This USDESEA school located in the provincial town of Kenitra, about 25 miles north of Rabat, the nation's capital, educated dependent children of the diplomatic and military personnel stationed there. The Thomases were a young couple then living in Madrid, Spain where Bob was deployed as a dentist on the nearby U. S. Air Force Base in Torrejon. Seeing the images of Morocco brought back their memories of that exotic visit and of the times they shared exploring new cultures and European living. Our conversations about shared experiences as young folks from rural backgrounds thrown into the big world bonded us thoroughly.

So, this meeting with Martha and Bob would probably have been in 1975, give or take a year. The particulars of the art show are very vague in my memory well, but I do remember them purchasing a 10 x 13 inch oil on paper entitled Forest Lawn Park 3 created in 1973. They paid $25.00. Little did they or I know then that they would become some of my most devoted collectors.

In the ensuring years, I remained determined to be a painter and survive from the sales of my work. At my modest Greensboro studio, I developed a Studio Exhibition format, whereby I could sell directly to collectors two or three times a year without benefit of the gallery system, which in those days--and even today--makes it difficult to earn a living solely off those sales. I had had the good sense to keep accurate records early of all paintings created. I used 3x5 index cards onto which I recorded the information about each painting with an inventory number. Concurrently, I also did the same with all collectors dutifully recording their addresses, what they had bought and for how much. With this Collectors File, a basis was formed for the mailing list for these Studio Exhibitions.

Martha and Bob Thomas reconnected with me again around 1979 when they responded to one of my Studio Exhibition invitations. From then and up to when I moved to New Mexico in the mid-90's, they were invited to over 30 exhibitions, attended at least 10 of them, and purchased over 15 paintings, ranging in subject matter from more North Carolina landscapes (their Graham Farm Near Wilmington 36, an oil on paper measuring 36 x 44 inches is a spectacular piece), six paintings based on my experiences on Samos Island, Greece in the mid-80's, and three more New Mexico landscapes.

With this summarized background of my relationship with Martha and Bob Thomas, I want to show the reader how the works of a painter eventually are totally intertwined with the person who purchases them. The painter becomes a personal friend and the paintings displayed on the walls of the collectors' homes remind them everyday of the artist, the shared experiences in the painting which prompted the purchase, the intimate conversations of mutual concern and the general welfare of the artist.

Such was the telephone call last night. Bob, for whatever reason, had looked at my website and read the Blog where I had relayed the experience of the retina problems I've had since July 4th weekend. He and Martha were immediately concerned about me and called to see how I was faring. We conversed for quite a while, getting caught up on our respective lives. We ended with their telling me that their thoughts and prayers were with me as I sought a resolution to this loss of vision. Upon hanging up the phone, I was very still, contemplative, and deeply touched that I meant so much to these two wonderful and caring persons who first encountered me and my dream of being a painter on a flat piece of park land 34 years ago in Asheboro, North Carolina.

Artist and Collector Relations

I received a telephone call last night, December 3, 2009, from Martha and Bob Thomas who currently divide their time between Warrenton, Virginia and Ramseur, North Carolina. The call prompts this reflection on how relationships can be created when buying art.


It was a city park in Asheboro, North Carolina where I first met Martha and Bob Thomas. It was spring and the city was sponsoring an art fair to which I had come to sell my paintings in a make-shift booth set up beside my pickup truck. Having just completed an Master of Fine Arts degree in painting at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, located about 30 miles up Highway 220 from Asheboro, I was anxiously seeking any venue for sales of my work to fulfill a goal of being a painter who survives solely from those sales.


When Martha and Bob strolled by they looked at the paintings to see bucolic landscapes of North Carolina's Piedmont region displayed alongside exotic images of Morocco. I think the anomaly of seeing such disparate images in this setting stirred their curiosity. They stopped and we struck up a conversation.


They had been to Morocco back in the early 70's. I was living there at that time. I was a teacher of Art, English, and Humanities at the Kenitra American High School, a USDESEA school for dependent children of diplomatic and military personnel from the United States. The paintings they were seeing were the result of experiences I had had there. They were a young couple then living in Madrid, Spain where Bob was deployed as a dentist on the nearby U. S. Air Force Base in Torrejon. Seeing the images of Morocco brought back their memories of that exotic visit and of the times they shared exploring new cultures and European living. Our conversations about our shared experiences as young folks from rural backgrounds thrown into the big world bonded us thoroughly.


So, this meeting with Martha and Bob would probably have been in 1975, give or take a year. The particulars of the art show are very vague in my memory well; however, the Thomases have stuck by me as collectors ever since our first meeting. They purchased that day a 10 x 13 inch oil on paper entitled Forest Lawn Park 3. They paid $25.00. Little did they or I know then that they would become one of my most devoted collectors.


In the ensuring years, I remained determined to be a painter and survive from the sales of my work. At my modest Greensboro studio, I developed a Studio Exhibition format whereby I could sell directly to collectors two or three times a year without benefit of the gallery system, which in those days--and even today--makes it difficult to earn a living solely off those sales. I had had the good sense to keep accurate records early of all paintings created. I used 3 x 5 index cards to record each painting with an inventory number thereby creating an Object File. Concurrently, I used the same method to create a Collectors File, which formed the basis of the mailing list for these Studio Exhibitions.


Martha and Bob Thomas reconnected with me again around 1979 when they responded to one of my Studio Exhibition invitations. From then and up to when I moved to New Mexico in the mid-90's, they were invited to over 30 exhibitions, attended at least 10 showings, and purchased over 15 paintings, ranging in subject matter from more North Carolina landscapes (their Graham Farm Near Wilmington 36, an oil on paper measuring 36 x 44 inches is a spectacular piece), six paintings based on my experiences on Samos Island, Greece, and three New Mexico landscapes.


With this summarized background of my relationship with Martha and Bob, I want to show the reader how the works of a painter eventually are intertwined with the person who purchases them. The painter becomes a personal friend and the paintings displayed on the walls of the collectors' homes remind them everyday of the artist, the shared experiences in the painting which prompted the purchase in the first place, the intimate conversations of mutual concerns, and the general welfare of the artist.


Such was the telephone call last night. Bob, for whatever reason, had looked at my website and read the Blog where I relayed the experience of the retina problems I've had starting in July. he and Martha were immediately concerned about me and called to see how I was faring. We conversed for quite a while, getting caught up on our respective lives with their telling me that their thoughts and prayers were with me as I sought resolution of this loss of vision. Upon concluding our conversation and hanging up the phone, I was very still, contemplative, and deeply touched that I meant so much to these two wonderful and caring persons who first encountered me and my dream of being a painter on a flat piece of park land 34 years ago in Asheboro, North Carolina.