Born in middle America, now residing in the Pacific Northwest. Probably old enough to be your grandfather - don’t ask. A couple years of art classes, but generally self-taught and self-deluded. Some publishing history in the small press with illustration and comics... which didn’t turn out well... now concentrating on collage. Extremely poor, but not hungry. www.goofbutton.com
Maybe I could say a few words...
about an artist who really impresses me and who was a big influence on me. His name is David Birkey:
I guess you could say he works in the style commonly known as "pop surrealism" - though I hate that term and dislike the majority of work done in that vein. I have no idea how he would classify his own stuff, but for me it's much smarter and more classical than all the jokers and street thugs who appear in "Juxtapoz" magazine or on sites like FecalFace, Hi-Fructose, etc. and I don't know why he isn't rich and famous (or maybe he is? I dunno).
He utilizes elements of mass culture and politics like many of those artists do, but he does so in less obvious ways, and with less obvious intentions. He also has a deep and broad understanding of art history, and his references to existing works are not just clever but often profound and startling. His piece "Revisionist History - 1565"
based on Brueghel's "Hunters in the Snow" is a perfect example of his approach.
He's just as adept at appropriating and commenting on outsider art, without resorting to mere aping or condescension.
I find his Louis Wain paintings very moving, sensitive to the artist's talent and difficulties while still retaining the oddness and "punch" of the original work. You can also see elements of surrealism, OP art, children's storybooks, and so on in his various pieces, but it's all included with authority and intelligence rather than as gimmick or namedropping.
His technical ability is utterly flawless: complex compositions and perfect drawing and media handling without a bit of ostentatiousness. He has the kind of ability that makes me want to crush my hands with an anvil... he can effortlessly conjure up whatever imagery and style he needs to convey his ideas. There are no shortcuts in his work -- it's all there, calmly and beautifully rendered.
Anyhow, I love his stuff. I wish his website had some close-ups or detail shots; I've seen a lot of his work in person and it's remarkable. I also wish I knew what he's done recently, as most of the work at his site seems to be older.