A keen-eyed reader of Dan’s Papers will notice the name Keith Mantell, his work having appeared on our several covers over the years. If you like his work as much as we do, you can see it now at William Ris Gallery in Jamesport or sign up for the classes he teaches at East End Arts.
What was the inspiration for this piece?
Inspiration comes in many different ways. Sometimes it shows up in one corner of a photo for one idea and I find this little thing that inspires me. I was asked to do some paintings at a North Fork Country Club event. I saw this kid standing off in the distance during a radio-control regatta where I was taking a bunch of images. I used various shots, combined some of the elements I liked into this composition and wound up with “Skipper Tacking.”
It’s a very summery painting. What are you most looking forward to on the East End this summer?
A nice hot summer. I love being outdoors in the sun, searching for something paint-worthy and paint it wherever I find it.
As a plein air painter, have you been bottled up all winter?
Did managing an art gallery change the way you looked at art, or change the way you approached your own art?
Just the opposite. I used the way I look at art, and how the direction of the art markets I follow trend, in order to keep the gallery experience fresh and current. Art and artists are always evolving. Current events in an artist’s life will always be a flashpoint for art.
You can follow that all the way back throughout history. Some of those inspirational events in an artists lifetime may include but not be limited to hard news events but also be based on relationships, fashion, technology, science, food the list is almost endless. As far as my approach is concerned. I keep my eyes and ears open and try to not to be stagnant.
Why are art galleries, and purchasing art from galleries, important?
Artists need to have places to show and sell their work. The public should be aware that there is great art that is available that will add and increase value to their lives, enhance their homes and maybe work out as an investment for their heirs. It doesn’t always come at an astronomical cost. In my opinion, it shouldn’t come from a big box store or a catalog in the mail.
Owning a piece of art is an investment in a creative process that brings enjoyment for generations. Art is vital in our lives, and an investment in creativity will only benefit future generations. The experience of buying art from a gallery supports the arts community, the economy, and educates and builds an individuals mind.
If you could sit down to coffee with any artist from history, who would it be and what would you talk about?
I could easily list a few dozen artists, across many genres and time, but I’ll go with Picasso. He’ll definitely have some good stories, or throw me out for asking.
See more of Mantell’s work at keithmantell.com.