Last Night in Little Rock: John Deering openingAugust 23, 2014
Last night there was a preview party at Cantrell Gallery for the new exhibit of our friend John Deering’s paintings, “Arkansas Traveler”. We “Arkansas Traveler” will continue through October 18. Regular gallery hours are Monday – Saturday, 10-5:00.
Artist’s Statement for “The Arkansas Traveler”
“While I have explored a wide range of subject matter as an artist and illustrator, the basis for my paintings and sculpture has always been to explore subjects in a representational way. Surface texture and the application of paint, clay or wax is a means to an end. That end is either the creation of a visual narrative or an attempt to record the image of a place or person. The group of paintings in “The Arkansas Traveler” display a little of both of these endeavors at the same time. These paintings are of subjects I have planned to draw or paint for years, images that I see around me every day. In some instances I have depicted scenes from Arkansas history. But generally, I haven’t painted scenes I’m most familiar with until fairly recently.
Rather than focusing on pure landscape or cityscape painting in my work, I always prefer to incorporate people. I always return to a sense of narrative.” -John Deering
John Deering is a lifelong Arkansan. He attended the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, where he studied fine art. In 1981, he got a job at the Arkansas Democrat, (now the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette) where he worked in Advertising Layout, but quickly moved to the Editorial Art Dept. creating maps, charts and illustrations. He became a regular cartoon contributor to the “Voices” page. In 1988 after winning a number of regional cartooning awards, he was promoted to the Democrat’s Chief Editorial cartoonist.
John’s political cartoons have been featured in Time, Newsweek, and the Sunday New York Times and have been shown on the NBC Nightly News, ABC and C-Span. John has won several national awards for political cartooning, including the Fischetti Award given by Columbia College, Chicago, and the Berryman Award from the National Press Foundation. In addition to his editorial cartoons, Creators Syndicate also distributes his two comic features, “Strange Brew” and “Zack Hill”.
A professional sculptor as well, John has completed three monuments for the state of Arkansas which are on permanent display on the grounds of the state capitol in Little Rock. John’s work is in other public and private collections in Arkansas and around the U.S.