University of Arizona Museum of Art Lecture (updated)

Lecture 01

My exhibition of the Lebowski Cycle at the University of Arizona Museum of Art ended recently. I got to wrap it up the week before by giving a talk about the work for a nice crowd at the museum. Great to have the work up in Tucson and to see so many old friends at the talk, including my favorite professor from my undergraduate days, Classics professor Dr. David Soren, whose classes I took at UA back in 1987 and 1988! A real treat to catch up with this brilliant man after all that time. (I’m showing my age, because it didn’t occur to me to take a selfie with him…)

lecture 01

The lecture was fun for me, (what’s not to like about talking about painting, and a big body of work I spent 5 years making)? It was much easier, and a lot more effective, to talk about the paintings when they were actually in the room. Talking about paintings from slides somehow does not have the same effect.

Tucson Sky

In my lecture, I was going to explain how growing up in Tucson was responsible for my love of color as a painter. I think the sunsets that whole week explained it a lot better.

Raft of the Medusa - installation shot

The installation shots really help to give a sense of the scale of these paintings. So much of what I was after here was the impact that the old master narrative paintings have because of their size, their physical presence, which never translates in photos or on the internet.

Exhibition - installation shot

It was great to have the work up at the University of Arizona, at my alma mater, in my hometown. That had a nice symmetry. Thanks to everyone at the Museum, and to everyone who came out for the lecture. Thanks to Eric Stoner for the installation & lecture photos. 

Lebowski Talk flyer

University of Arizona Alumni Magazine Article

The University of Arizona Alumni Magazine just published a nice piece tied to my exhibition of The Lebowski Cycle at the UA Museum of Art. It’s great to have the paintings up at the UAMA in Tucson (through Sept 25th). Thanks to Margaret Regan for writing a great article and Jacob Chinn for the great photos.

Joe Forkan Art-3sm

Opening Reception • The Lebowski Cycle • The University of Arizona Museum of Art

The University of Arizona Museum of Art in Tucson, Arizona is hosting an exhibition of The Lebowski Cycle in the museum’s Main Gallery from May 28th through September 25th, 2016.

The exhibition will include all 15 of the large-scale oil paintings from the cycle.

An opening reception will be held on June 2nd from 5-7 pm at the museum.

Supper at Emmaus (After Caravaggio) • Joe Forkan 2006-2009 oil on linen 96?x 38?

Supper at Emmaus (After Caravaggio) • Joe Forkan 2006-2009 oil on linen 96?x 38?

I am particularly looking forward to this show, as I largely grew up in Tucson, and received my BFA in Studio Art from the University of Arizona. The UA Museum of Art was also the first art museum I went to when I was young, and it will be great to have my work shown there.


On View – Q Art Salon, Santa Ana, CA

Dark Skull 1000

Dark Skull • Joe Forkan 2015 Oil on Linen 20″ x 20″

Last year I began started teaching a drawing class on Heads and Hands at CSU Fullerton. I ordered a couple of skulls for the class, and had also been experimenting with some new paints (trying some different lead whites from several different makers – needing to find US sources now that the EU has gotten so skittish about lead white). So when the skulls arrived, I jumped into a couple paintings from them. I set up the first one in a very dark corner of my studio, and the second I placed near a north facing window, mostly just looking at color and form.

The paintings are largely about color, paint, and close looking.

These are 2 of the 3 paintings included in Fleshed Out, a group show at Q Art Salon, in Santa Ana, CA, on view from Dec. 5 – Jan. 1, 2016.

Skull-01-detail-1000 rev

Detail • Dark Skull • Joe Forkan 2015 Oil on Linen 20″ x 20″

Forkan_skull_02-10001 rev

Yellow Skull • Joe Forkan 2015 Oil on Linen 20″ x 20″