Untitled Painting

 


One hot summer night about seventeen years ago, my friend Sean Welsh, a writer in New York City came over to my loft in Chelsea and threw down some paint and we made art. In one night we managed to take two 8 ft. steel doors and turn them into something special.

Unfortunately, the image of the piece above is not the best but maybe the description can help.


For years, Sean and discussed a collaboration of our creative process on a large scale. It wasn't the first time, I had done several illustrations and later covers for his books, but this time it would be different. It would be large and it would be epic.


This painting was a real mixture of all types of media. It was a combination of graffiti, written word, found objects, paint and plenty of whiskey.


Technically, the painting is a diptych because it is two matching steel panels side by side. 

The idea stemmed from a story about an old man in the neighborhood returning to his favorite spot only to find that it was out of business, and the doors had been locked with a sign out front that said thank you for your years of patronage, you will be missed. It became a shrine, a memorial of past time that all the locals would keep alive if only in spirit.


The only way we could work on it was on the floor because of it's size. I brought out a bag of tools and began pounding on the doors with a steel mallet to give it an aged look. Sean took his pen and applied his prose. The whole thing just felt natural and organic.


I had plenty of room in the studio to get this done, and a place to hang out while we contemplated our next move.


The painting never got a title. We punched this thing out in one night. We kept trying to get back on the board to do a little more work on it, but it never happened. Sean arrived late that night and we watched the sun come up on the Highline where my loft was located.

It was something that both of us felt very good about. I was looking forward to getting this into an exhibition coming up, but life changed and I moved into another loft space.


Somehow, the painting got misplaced after the move and we have never been able to track it down. To this day, we have no idea where it ended up.