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Thug Pa$$ion

Written by Noah Hanson   
Saturday, 20 May 2006 04:34
Noah checks out this show in Seattle.

As most of you know, oil paints are probably the hardest style of painting to learn how to use correctly. An artist who successfully uses oils must devote years to the medium. Layering, color mixing, drying time, the use of different brushes and surfaces, so on and so forth, must all come into play. When we think of skilled oil painters, the people that come to mind are probably van Gogh, da Vinci, Dali, Munch, Rembrandt, Bob Ross, etc. All are artists who devoted their lives to the craft, and who also, without a doubt, have made their marks forever as true artists.

I bring up these things because I myself have used oils before. Personally, I'm not very good at using them at all, and if you've ever taken a high school painting class you know it's no walk in the park. I can't stress enough how talented you must be to use them, much less come up with somthing that's fun to look at. Some times I think the critic must remember that, and then look past the subject matter and a little more at the actual painting process. How else would bowls of fruit find so many walls to hang onto? There's more to art then creating ironic symbols, silly drips, pretty birds, and stuff that sells. Call me crazy, but I believe that on occasion, the brush strokes of a painting can be what really makes it interesting, (but we'll save that thought for another day...)

Anyway, I wanted you all to think about that before I went on to show you the pictures that I took at this show opening last week. The show was titled "Thug Pa$$ion," and was made up of over 20 different oil paintings that Jesse Edwards has been working on during this last year. The content can be seen as immature, callow, or juvenile, but I must say that these paintings don't at all show signs of someone who is untrained at what they do. I'm mentioning this now because I know a number of you readers out there like to leave nasty comments on fecalface about how you're tired of seeing people with the mentality of a 5 year old making art. Along with natural talent, Jesse spent along time getting to this level of painting, and he's still not satisfied.

The show took place in the back of a small salon boutique type setting in Capitol Hill, the day after the hugely anticipated BLVD opening, but to be honest, "Thug Pa$$ion" was one of the most impressive shows that I've seen in a long, long time. Much more impressive, I thought, then BLVD's show "Groundswell." I'm going to try to ease you into this as best I can, but prepare to be shocked. I'm at least prepared to be called crazy. "Figure Walking"


"Figure Male Blue" and "Standing"


"Standing" detail.


"Shrooms 1"


"Girl In Mirror," "Spam," and "Studio"






This one called "Shit Painting" has the best story ever, but I think I'm gonna save it for the future interview.




The artist, Jesse Arthur Edwards. He was so excited to see that someone from fecalface.com had come to check out his show, that he must have shook my hand at least ten times. He also told me that "it's pretty much the best art site out there."








"Vomiting Girl"


While I was at the show this guy on the right ended up buying that one of the girl throwing up. His name was Mort Baharloo, and was supposedly famous for writing a novel called "The Quince Seed Potion." I recall him saying that "there is a lot of vomiting in my book," and seeing also that he has a shirt made of Fruit Stripe Gum, he must be pretty cool... It should be noted that Jesse's stuff was very modestly priced, with an average cost of less than $300. That one sold for $125, with the more expensive ones there ranging $420 to $500. Now put into account how long the paintings take to make. What is that, like minimum wage or somthing?


"Rap Music"


I think that's probably a small self-portrait in this one called "Playgirl Masterpeice."


"Twinkies" and "Strippers"


I am not exactly comparing Jesse to any of the master painters I mentioned earlier, but I can say that Jesse seems like one of the more legitimate artists I've met since moving to Seattle. If any of you read the review I did of Seattle's new BLVD gallery, you'd probably know that I'm becoming a little bit critical over the art being shown and made here. I can't believe some of the stuff that passes...

Prior to the show I had never met Jesse. I had visited his website, jesseedwards.net, and his "myspace" profile after I noticed he left more than the usual amount of comments on the fecalface blogs. I knew he was the head honcho of the 3A crew (their tags are everywhere here) and I knew that he had been into tagging for a long, long time. At first I thought Jesse's stuff was a bit silly and I wasn't really sure it was what I was looking for, but since then I've hung out with him a bit and have already been able to hear some of his stories about where he's come from, where he wants to go, and why he's doing it all. I've been to his studio apartment, and I've seen where he works. The whole place is devoted to one thing, and that is his art. The guy is legit, and together the two of us will soon be working on an interview for y'all, as well as a photo project following the different steps, start to finish, he takes to do an oil painting. I'm stoked on the guy, and just took a painting he gave me to the framers just a few hours ago.

His show is still up and running over at the Galactic Boutique for I don't know how long, so hurry out and take a look at Jesse's works before they're gone. It helps to have Jesse around to tell you little stories about making his paintings, but I know you'll be impressed once you see them in person anyway. You'd never guess that his stuff was in there from the looks of the place (a very fruity vibe,) but it's located at 1213 Pine Street, open Tuesday through Sunday.


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