About Doug Easterly

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All art is interactive

Having just visited my grandmother, an artist herself who motivated and guided me throughout my artistic career, I was reminded of one of her most simple yet profound lessons: “leave it alone” – or in other words, don’t overwork an artwork.

Ignoring this maxim will tend to muddle and destroy any nuanced serendipities discovered during the process, and it also limits the ability for the audience to lend their own imagination towards connecting the dots and mentally filling out the fictional space. Not to mention, this approach of “leaving it alone” also lends a more open respect for the process (the fact that the artist’s imagination was negotiated with a chosen media).

I only just discovered the wonderful career of Philip Jackson whose figurative sculptures adhere to this rule quite well – just imagine how this work would change if there were actual faces peering out from below the hoods!

Cloister Conspiracy by Philip Jackson

During this same trip I was able to run by the Harvard Art Museum where I was quite impressed by the number of Rodin’s sculptures – an artist quite renown for leaving traces of his process embedded within his forms. Rodin’s Eternal Idol:

Eternal Idol by Rodin

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  • Residency – week 5

Residency – week 5

After 4 weeks of work (3 in actuality), the show is up! It was nice to have quite a few people come by the first day despite the bad weather.

Overall I’m quite happy with what I accomplished, but I feel I am just now getting into a groove – looking forward to settling in the studio back home soon.

The exhibit will be open daily 12:00 – 19:00 with a closing reception at 18:30 on Friday. The show comes down Saturday morning.

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Residency – week 4

There was less spinning in the mud this week – I finally figured out some colour palettes I’m satisfied with. I was reading where Phil Noto and Tomer Hanuka mention colour as the most laborious part of their process – although they are working strictly digital.

One week left until the exhibition! Time to finish a few more pieces this week.

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Cool Breeze on the Rocks at Maki Fine Arts

Yesterday I visited Maki Fine Arts in Shinjuku-ku. The works, large photographic prints by Shunsuke Kano, spanned a wide range of urban discoveries – some meditating on large colour fields of buildings/construction sites and banners – others, dense window displays with subtle reflections lending indication of city location. Hiro Kimura, one of my hosts from 3331 met me there and introduced me to the director, Takahiro Maki, where we discussed some of my new works.

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  • Residency – week 3
  • Residency – week 3
  • Residency – week 3
  • Residency – week 3
  • Residency – week 3
  • Residency – week 3
  • Residency – week 3
  • Residency – week 3
  • Residency – week 3

Residency – week 3

A few hiccups this week, but cranked out some new work in the end. After a few months, I finally have CatsEye/Eclipse/GitHub operable on my new laptop (a big thanks to collaborator Ben Jack who helped me fix it – at 5 a.m. England time!). I also decided to give up on casein during this residency; it’s just not as intuitive as when applied over plywood – I’m painting everything here on paper. There is a Nihonga shop nearby in Ueno, which would be cool to test out while I’m here – I doubt Gordon Harris carries such supplies 🙂

Still not much exploring up to this point – I was hoping to have 10 finished works before loosening my studio leash. Only have 6 so far.

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for Humans exhibition at Jiro Miura gallery

March 31 was the opening reception of for Humans; a group exhibition of artists at the Jiro Miura gallery in Chuo-ku. The work, spanning both contemporary and traditional painting techniques, photography and sculpture, was quite good. My favourites being Ken Matsuyama’s figurative/pattern based paintings, Ryoko Kimura’s modern interpretation of Nihonga style and Fujii Takehito’s twisted evil girl-robot manifestations – exquisitely crafted works in steel. I was lucky enough to meet several of the artists as well as talk with the gallery owner extensively – it turns out he visited New Orleans many years ago, about the same time I was living there.