Thursday, July 18, 2013

“Distant Jazz” New Work By Michael Sprouse

What better is there to do when the outside temperature is stuck on “eternal scorch” than to paint in the studio? I literally just put the final stroke of paint on this commissioned work about 15 minutes prior to this blog entry.

I’ve titled this work “Distant Jazz” because I wanted the back story of the painting to be about a young woman circa 1925ish who has just entered a club. As she is removing her coat, she hears the sound of distant jazz coming from some area where she will soon be headed and her mind is instantly filled with everything that made the Jazz era shine.

The acrylic on canvas work measures 30” x 30” and this was commissioned by the curator of a well known gallery that carries my work as an addition to the private collection of he and his partner. This is the sister painting to a male portrait in the same style that I completed earlier this year for the couple.

Click on the image below to see the work larger and in greater detail.

“Distant Jazz”
acrylic on canvas
30” x 30”
©2013 Michael Sprouse

To see more examples of my work, visit

Friday, July 12, 2013

Amy Schumer's Humorus Yet hard Hitting Video.

I first heard this skit referenced on NPR's Fresh Air when Amy Schumer was interviewed by Terry Gross. Now that I've seen it, I can say that it's definitely funny, but at the same time - it's hard hitting, biting ironic satire - and it's most assuredly NSFW.

Terry Gross told Amy described the sketch "was a real girl thing" and that she "recognized" that behavior in women. Of course she wasn't referencing the actual material in the skit, but the point is that Terry and Amy agreed that women - for a variety of reasons - go into self-deprecation when complemented.

Their opinion was that men respond to compliments from other men, should they occur, differently than women in our culture. I tend to agree.

"Hey, dude. Nice shirt."
"Um, cool. Thanks."
"Got a beer?"

Amy - through comedy - highlights this issue brilliantly. Irony has longed served as the perfect delivery system for culturally important messages.

Because of that, Amy Schumer has - in my opinion - raised the bar here from simple comic schtick to some degree of high art. In fact, if you view this with a slightly different mind set, it could pass for a Video Installation work or even to some degree documented Performance Art.