This week’s cover was presented to us by radio icon Howard Stern, in partnership with the North Shore Animal League America. This marks Stern’s third Dan’s Papers cover to date. Here, he discusses the inspiration for this piece, evoking emotion with art and more.
A Chat with Howard Stern, Artist
What is the name of this photorealistic piece, and what beach inspired it?
Just “Southampton Dune.” That’s the name. This is part of a series I did from an early morning beach walk. There are seven different sepias and each one takes an ordinary moment, a view we might pass every day and not notice. The dune fence is usually something intrusive, but here the wood and wire seem to be doing a dance across the sand and collecting the sand up into a beautiful smooth sweep. It felt like a big moment to me.
What emotion or feeling have your paintings evoked in those you’ve shown them to?
Most friends express shock when seeing them. They can’t believe that I am a painter. Because I’m on the radio they assume that I do nothing else but talk and are surprised by the amount of observation and detail in my art. I’ve received great feedback, especially from people who live in the Hamptons. They say it captures something magical about this area.
How has your technique and/or process evolved since your July 16, 2021 cover art of Deerfield Road?
Hopefully, I try to evolve every time I paint. I’m always trying to keenly observe what’s going on around me and how to interpret that on paper.
What East End locales are on your list to photograph and consider painting next?
Next up: Corwith Barns. I’ve done a bunch of smaller paintings of the barns but this one is a larger size. The barns are no longer there but I photographed them many times, and I’m doing a big painting that hopefully captures every broken board on that fading structure. I lost my father recently, he was 99 years old. Not sure how old those barns were, but I feel like painting the barns is honoring him and all those growing older and then gone.
What aspect of painting are you enjoying most at this moment in time?
Drawing, observing, detail — I love it all. I wish I had started drawing when I was younger because I enjoy it so much and I feel like I missed out on many years of passion. I’m in love with what one pencil can do.
Aside from the three Dan’s Papers covers your art has now appeared on, have you begun to share your work in other ways? If not, do you plan to in the foreseeable future?
My wife (Beth Ostrosky Stern) will put them up on her Instagram account @bethostern occasionally, but I have not shown these paintings much. I would like to do some sort of show for charity but haven’t been able to put that together yet.