Art

Springfield Sun - - NEWS -

ative out­put. For decades, the painter, who stud­ied at Tem­ple Univer­sity’s Tyler School of Art, has been amass­ing a hefty body of work, an oeu­vre that’s both strik­ingly beau­ti­ful and flatout strange.

There’s oil por­traits of Amer­i­can pres­i­dents; ab­stract de­pic­tions of Civil War bat­tles (in­spired by the Ken Burns PBS doc­u­men­tary se­ries); an al­lit­er­a­tive, an­i­malthemed al­pha­bet se­ries; ink ren­der­ings of dis­em­bod­ied legs and ghosts; and so much more.

The in­flu­ences and in­spi­ra­tions seem vast. A vi­brant wa­ter­color paint­ing of a de­tached foot stand­ing on cut grass — ti­tled, “And There, in the Mid­dle of a Field, He Found Him­self” — seems like some­thing right out of “Monty Python’s Fly­ing Cir­cus.”

Endi­cott says he tries not to over-think his art­work, doesn’t dwell on the hows or whys of paint­ing a (for in­stance) large am­pu­tated foot in a field. If he does con­cep­tu­al­ize or in­tel­lec­tu­al­ize his art, that part of­ten comes after­ward, when he starts dis­cussing it.

“A year or two ago, I was watch­ing this show on Net­flix — I for­get what it was called. Each episode fo­cused on a dif­fer­ent area of art,” he says. In the show, “This graphic de­signer was say­ing, at a cer­tain point in his ca­reer, he learned to be a more care­less artist and a more thought­ful cu­ra­tor. To think less while he’s mak­ing art, and then to make a lot of it.”

That phi­los­o­phy, Endi­cott says, “re­ally res­onated with me.” It’s how he ended up with nine por­traits of early Amer­i­can pres­i­dents and a whole Civil War se­ries. “I’d just sit there and sketch at night,” watch­ing the Ken Burns doc­u­men­tary, “not re­ally look­ing at what I was sketch­ing but just sketch­ing based on the still pho­to­graphs they were show­ing. I found that was re­ally help­ful, and I made some cool draw­ings and paint­ings out of that. I didn’t set out to do a se­ries of paint­ings on the Civil War. It just hap­pened.”

Even­tu­ally, dur­ing the artis­tic process, a theme or “nar­ra­tive comes around,” he says. “Or I kind of force the nar­ra­tive onto it, which in a sim­i­lar way hap­pened with our beer la­bels.”

He adds, “I’m con­cep­tu­ally lazy, and then I just pick ideas out. I let ideas come out. In art school, I would be like, ‘Al­right, I’m go­ing to do a se­ries about how Ge­orge Bush is an aw­ful pres­i­dent,’ but the work was one note and kind of stale.” It’s about keep­ing the cre­ative work loose and as care­free as it can be.

With a full plate as a fa­ther, busi­ness owner, beer brewer, and hus­band to Erin Mckenna Endi­cott, who’s been run­ning for Am­bler Bor­ough Coun­cil this year, paint­ing and sketch­ing can be a means to un­wind for Endi­cott.

“My wife will be the first per­son to tell you I don’t just sit down and turn the TV on and watch crap for hours,” Endi­cott says. “I will al­ways be do­ing some­thing. … This is just some­thing I need to do. And she’s learned over the years that I’m a much bet­ter per­son if I’m given the time to do this, to pur­sue art. It’s just some­thing that needs to be done.

“I guess peo­ple like us can find mul­ti­ple ways to do it, you know. Play­ing in a band will also do it. Just some cre­ative out­let that’s not your day-to-day drudgery: get up, take care of the kids, get home. I need some­thing else that gets my mind go­ing.”

Endi­cott’s work is cur­rently on dis­play at Crime and Pun­ish­ment Brew­ing Com­pany in Brew­ery­town, and a se­ries of por­traits he made of lo­cal beer brew­ers was dis­played at Indy­hall in Old City in 2015.

He cred­its these re­cent op­por­tu­ni­ties to dis­play his work to the ex­po­sure he gets through his day job.

“I owe all of it to For­est & Main. Oth­er­wise I’d just be a no­body mak­ing art at home,” he says. “Luck­ily, be­cause of For­est & Main, peo­ple know I make art, and they fol­low me on In­sta­gram or some­thing, ap­proach me. It’s cool. I’m very thank­ful that this has got­ten me kind of alive as an artist again.”

As with all his show­ings, the up­com­ing Art in the Store­front gallery has Endi­cott feel­ing a vague sense of loss. There’s a sor­row in part­ing with a paint­ing, he says.

“I used to think I al­ways did art so other peo­ple could see it,” he says. “I guess some peo­ple do art truly for them­selves, but you still want that sat­is­fac­tion of some­one else lik­ing it. But I get sad when I take these paint­ings down and put them up in pub­lic.”

“It’s a real tes­ta­ment to how I feel about the art­work right now,” he adds. “I miss it when it’s gone.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.