Michael Banks, (American/AL, b. 1972) "Blonde" portrait of a young man, using paint and mixed media on found board. This painting exemplifies the strong colors and angular construction, including cuts and marks on the painted image, that characterize Banks' style. As a contemporary self-taught artist, Banks' portrait also depicts a one-eyed image and unusual angular facial features--his blonde man stares at the viewer like a stranger in a strange land. Both contemporary and traditionally thematic, Banks' unique, semi-representational, abstract style also relies upon his use of found objects, such as the found plywood board used for this portrait. Signed "Banks" lower left. Sight: 14 1/2" W x 18" H. Framed: 18 7/8 W x 22 1/4" H.
CONDITION: Excellent condition. The rough edges of the found board include a hole near the top left edge. The backside of the plywood shows old white paint. These are the natural, original qualities of the board.
Artist Bio: Michael Banks, (b. 1972, American/AL)
Michael Banks, outsider artist with a contemporary style, was born in 1972 to a single mother in a housing project in northern Alabama. His mother encouraged him to make art. He created in obscurity until 1992 when his mother died. For five years, Banks fell into a deep depression and could not paint. It was not until 1997 that Banks recalled his mother’s inspiration, and began the creation of his own unique brand of artwork.
A self-taught painter, his work is collected by lovers of self-taught art, & by those with an interest in contemporary art. He paints in wild bursts of energy and creates paintings with incredible vibrancy. His abstract figurative paintings are a mixture of folk art, urban street style and early modernism. He paints creatures and people with misshapen heads and eyes spaced far apart. His colors are deep and he incises the outlines of his form into his medium.
Michael has been exhibited in New York, Denver, and Atlanta. The Hurn Museum in Savannah, Georgia presented a One-Man exhibition of his work in 2005 and has a number of his works in their permanent collection. Articles featuring his work have appeared in Southern Living magazine (August 2006) and Better Homes and Gardens (August 2006).
His art has been purchased by the actor George Clooney, celebrity Martha Stewart, and movie director Tim Burton. Banks is one outsider artist who has certainly earned the right to be on the inside. Banks states, "Every day I try to create. Painting is my life." Source: Anton Haardt Gallery
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Michael Banks, "Blonde" Portrait on Found Board