Kirkland re-invents Visio

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I was reading my favorite blogs last week and came across a project that I just love at J.T. Kirkland’s Thinking About Art. (You remember Kirkland from that email interview I did with him last month. He’s the young, self-taught artist who drills holes into carefully selected wood from Home Depot and makes magic HD never envisioned. Here’s part one, part two and part three of that 3-part interview.)

Well the artist’s at it again. Subverting a commercial product, Microsoft’s “Visio,” to do his bidding as an art tool. He’s creating digital prints in editions of 10-25 and selling them for $20 or $25 each. And they’re imbued with the same kind of stillness and questioning about relationships and voids and chasms and wholes and parts that I love in the sculpture/paintings. Plus, with the prints you get some color! (top image is Kirkland’s first Visio print, “Underneath.”)

I had to have one.

I emailed Kirkland and this is what he said about the project.

As for the prints, yes, they are an ongoing series. Really I consider them to be studies for my Organic Minimalism but in the end I think they function as nice, finished pieces that give a little glimmer into my aesthetic. Plus they’re fun to do.

Here’s the post that started it all.

They’re actually all drawn using Microsoft Visio which is a tool that consultants, techies, etc, use to diagram process flows, org charts, swimlanes, etc. On my new project at work I was introduced to Visio and must use it everyday to document these types of things for the client. After a while the artist in me took over and I began to explore the possibilities of using Visio for other purposes. Soon enough I started cranking out these sketches and I thought it would be great to post these on the blog for a mere $20. It’d allow new collectors to buy affordable work and would allow more people to own something I made. I won’t get rich off this project any time soon but I think it’s win-win for everyone. (image is “Jail”)

On Monday, Wednesday and Friday, I post one print (each print is done in an edition of 10-25).

First person to email me and want it gets it. Perhaps a week or two later I’ll post another print from the same edition for those who were too late to get the first one. Also, periodically I plan to have a BONANZA day where for a certain timeframe people can email me to buy a print from any edition that I’ve already published on Thinking About Art. (image is “Three Holes”)

I must be fair though, this isn’t really “my” idea.

Duane Keiser, a brilliant painter in Richmond, VA, started the first blog for these purposes (as far as I know of). That’s where I got the idea. His site can be seen here: His wonderful little paintings are $100 each and I own three of them!

(image is yesterday’s painting (sold) from Keiser’s site. Keiser’s paintings are postcard size oil sketches done on site.)

Open your pocketbooks all you fledgling collectors and take a chance on Kirkland’s inventive, playful, extraordinarily good prints — at incredible prices. And check out Keiser’s accomplished postcard paintings too — they’re pretty great and great value.

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