Who do you think you are - Andy?


When I was an art student in Italy most of my professors were unofficial members of a very strict school of thought about how color should be used (unbeknownst to me when signing up for the school). They believed that color should always be exactly what the eye sees and always mixed, never applied right from the tube. So it's not an overstatement to say that for the most part, they openly despised my use of exaggerated color. In one critique a professor pointed out my painting and said, "Who do you think you are, Andy Warhol?!”, followed by his own smug laughter. 

In response to his commentary over the semester, this is one of several paintings that I made for my final art show at that school. As you can see, I used lemon yellow, dioxide purple (compliments on the color wheel which, as you may know, make the other color brighter) and cadmium red, all right out of the tube. I then signed it "Andy". The professor who was most vocal about his color theories refused to even go in the gallery where my paintings were hanging, which honestly delighted me. I stood outside the gallery, trying to hold back laughter and I smile every time I see it hanging in my studio today. It is a reminder to me of my own color theory, the freedom I believe in regarding art making and the right to use one's voice, no matter how high volume or bright it may be.