Category Archives: The Spurgeon Paintings

Etherton Gallery – The Artists of Lewis Framing

This summer I was invited by Etherton gallery in Tucson to participate in the exhibition: The Artists of Lewis Framing. The exhibition ran from June 7 – August 27th, and showcased the work of seven Tucson artists who work, or have worked, at Lewis Framing Studio, one of Tucson’s preeminent framing establishments.


Back before leaving for graduate school, I worked off-and-on at the studio in Tucson, which is a kind of hub in the local art community. It provided, and still provides, great framing of art and art objects, but it’s also a place where a lot of institutions, museums, galleries, collectors and artists cross paths and connect with each other.

Owner Bea Mason has built a great business and a great resource for the local arts community. She has also created a positive working environment for the artists she employs. She’s very supportive of them and their artistic pursuits, (even after they’ve moved on from the shop for many years, as I have). I am pleased to have been included in this show, and happy that Terry Etherton mounted an exhibition that not only showcases a lot of local Tucson talent, but gives some much deserved credit to Bea Mason for her support of local artists, and the position she holds in the local art community.

The show was a chance to exhibit with artists I’ve known for many years, but have never had the opportunity to show with, and also nice to have another body of work up in Tucson during my Lebowski Cycle exhibition at University of Arizona Museum of Art. Below are the paintings I had in the Etherton show.


Laguna Art Museum Art Auction – Feb 7th

Bush Street 2color(1200)

Spurgeon Tower Rooftops • Joe Forkan 2013 Oil on Linen 48? x 28?

This painting from 2013 is included in the Laguna Art Museum’s upcoming Art Auction 2015, set for Feb. 7th. The week-long Art Auction 2015 preview exhibition is now on view to the public.


Another addition to the Grid Work series, I used a completed observational painting as a starting point. This one is studio view in Santa Ana.

More information about the piece and the series is here.







On View – The Tucson Museum of Art

06 Spurgeon Shadow 1000

Spurgeon Shadow • Joe Forkan 2004, oil on panel, 51″ x 50″

My painting Spurgeon Shadow from the permanent collection at Tucson Museum of Art is currently included in Shadow Play, on view now until 06/15/2015.

Shadow Play is “an exhibition of paintings, photography, and works on paper that expresses the interplay between the material object and the immaterial qualities of light and shadow. Shadows serve as powerful visual devices that heighten the overall aesthetic effects in art and spark the imagination with their abstract qualities rooted in realism”.

Grid Work: Spurgeon Tower, Rooftops

Spurgeon Tower Rooftops • Joe Forkan 2013 Oil on Linen 48" x 28"

Spurgeon Tower Rooftops • Joe Forkan 2013 Oil on Linen 48″ x 28″

Another addition to the Grid Work series. I’m still building these using completed observational paintings as a starting point. This one is another studio view (see below). Eliminating expressive drawing as a component of the paintings has really ratcheted up my attention to subtle color relationships. Trying to build complexity with intentionally simple marks has really clarified to me how much size of mark and relationships of color build our sense of space and form.

Old & New-Rooftops, Bush Street • Joe Forkan 2011 Oil on Panel 17.5" x 11"

Old & New-Rooftops, Bush Street • Joe Forkan 2011 Oil on Panel 17.5″ x 11″

The image below is an early stage of the final painting, starting with solid masses over colored grids.

Rooftops, Spurgeon Tower (process) 2012 Oil on Linen 28” x 48” 900

Rooftops, Spurgeon Tower (process) 2012 Oil on Linen 28” x 48”