Cupcake with Cherries and wild cherry heart
Dimensions: 6" x 8"
Medium: oil on canvas
Edition size: Original
Availability: Only available at Peabody Gallery
This suite of paintings, hearkens back to a more realistic style, and a time of sweet dreams.
The original inspiration for the "Wild Cherry Hearts" series, was a childhood memory, of an "every child's Dream" candy store, on the shores of Lake Arrowhead, California.
In addition to having both taffy and cotton candy machines churning in the windows, they made their own lollipops; candy apple red, wild red cherry hearts, and classic spiral multicolored lollipops of all sizes. They were works of art; The spiral pops were like merino glass; alternating layers of colored and pure white confection, rolled into strands, twisted together, then wound into crisp, gleaming spirals.
The lollipops we took home were bigger then our heads. I remember being spell bound by a giant spiral pop 3 feet across that perpetually beckoned from behind weather worn glass. Candy apples, chocolate bananas, translucent pastel crystals of rock candy cultured on white twine, diaphanous pink cotton that stuck to everything, whatever you could think of in a child's candy dream, it came true.
The shop was in the "The Village", A German Swiss style plaza, with restaurants, arcades, a novelty store that sold glass birds that would bob their tiny heads in and out of glasses of water, Oceans in a Bottle, fragile miniature blown glass animals that rarely made it home in one piece, and of course, a candy store.
"In summer, they would string paper lanterns along the docks, (we almost always came by boat). I remember watching the sun set over the lake, multicolored Chinese lanterns twinkling in the twilight. My Grandfather stood tall on the rolling dock, his great arms crossed in the warm summer air and slipping light. Smiling, he watched silently as we ran between the dimensions of the real and imagined, as the spirits of the night closed ranks around us.".
These paintings, are a metaphor for the all those sweet timeless moments, that make life worth living, the candy hearts, as a symbol for joy and love; the cherries, for the ripe sweetness of life.
Wild Cherry, was my favorite flavor, and symbolizes the freedom and joy of both childhood and creativity.
I wanted the confections and cakes to have some of the qualities they would actually have - the crisp snap of the lollipops, the soft rich frosting on the cakes - The colors are a celebration of life. I used dramatic lighting, and the deep rich darkened colors of the purples and violets and browns because in life, there is always the contrast - light and dark- and sometimes the darkness, can make the delightful things in the world, seem even more beautiful and poignant.
The Wild Cherry paintings, were all done from life, and are intended to convey the intangible elements that defy words, but can only be expressed - hopefully- with imagery.