What is Collage?

“Technique of composing a work of art by pasting on a single surface various materials not normally associated with one another; assemblage, an assemblage ofdiverse elements or fragments in unlikely or unsuspected juxtaposition: Freench, equiv. to colle paste, glue. (from Webster’s unabridged Dictionary, 1994.

I started making collages in 1965 while teaching English and Creative Writing at San Francisco State College. Sold maybe a dozen at the Psychedelic Shop on Haight Street, and Bill Grahm invited me to show them at the Ken Kesey Acid Test Festival at Longshoreman’s Hall, which I did. I think I gave over half of them away that weekend after drinking the Grateful Dead’s Kool Aid, but I also had a pocket full of cash and a dream of career in Art. Instead, I published four novels, taught Creative Writing at SF State and then at Cabrillo Communuity College in Santa Cruz, and only after I retired in 1998 did I once again turn to collage as a means of expression. Each composition comes to me like a poem, with the individual pieces singing to me and to each other, telling me how they want to fit together.They still sing sweetly to me every day.

It was 2008 before I opened my first show at the Dancing Man Gallery in Santa Cruz, followed by an Invitation from the Santa Cruz Art League to join their Board of Directors. Soon I found myself president of the organization, winning awards in various competitions, and learning more about art than I ever imagined from the hundreds of members, many Internationally known professionals, who freely critiqued my work, offering helpful perspectives and invaluable teachings about color and form.

Although I love to work with themes, such as seasons and special Holidays, I have also become intrigued by brilliantly colored abstractions, as well as the subtle world of black and white. I hope to fill pages with samples of all these themes over the next few weeks. I have thousands of works to choose from.

I have also designed book covers and posters from friends and events, and love to make composite photos of family events–birthdays, anniversaries, etc., working in close coordination with those whose photos have been entrusted to me. (I prefer to make copies of rare or single copy photos before working with them, since the collage process (glue!) can be damaging to originals.

As for sales, well…I have plenty of original art, but I have also made reproductions of various pieces for sale at lesser prices, and I can send them flat, matted, and or framed, with the buyer paying postage. All rates and weights are available through the post office, and Original work should always be insured for full value when shipping. In a week or two I will add an additional page with rates for both reproduction (various sizes), mailing cost estimates, insurance, etc.

For now, I’ll just be happy to get some more pages of original work up for show!