Ken O'Neil left the security of a life as an engineer and entrepreneur in the halcyon years of California's Silicon Valley to follow his bliss and pursue a career as a painter and writer. If you have ever wondered how an artist conceives an abstract painting, this book takes you on one artist's journey. From written notes in journals, gathered over more than forty years of world travel in places both familiar and remote, Ken O'Neil built the foundation of his art. In this book the reader can travel with him and observe the transformation from notes to a painting.
"What impresses me most, upon seeing Ken O'Neil's monotypes, is their inspired ability to engage the mind and transport the spirit. His expression of elegant ideas, borne through the medium of monotype printmaking, requires the creation of explicit syntax within an expansive language. Ken O'Neil not only forged his unique visual language; he mastered it, and has raised it up to poetry."--Michael Castillo, owner and masterprinter, Hand Graphics, Santa Fe, New Mexico
|Publisher:||Stone Corral Press|
|Product dimensions:||8.20(w) x 10.20(h) x 0.80(d)|
About the Author
Ken O'Neil lives with his wife, Andrea Heckman, author, filmmaker, and educator, in their two-studio home in the mountains of Taos, New Mexico.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Ken O'Neil is a former Silicon Valley executive who left his position at the age of 46 to pursue his dream of being an artist. He sensed he always had "a little pulse of nonconformity in my psyche, maturing slowly but succinctly." He explains his eventual shift from executive to artist, "There are subtleties in the physical surroundings and some other ones that are much more difficult to identify, all carefully orchestrating to bring things to a place of maturity." Many of the full-page color illustrations of O'Neil's art works are accompanied on facing pages by entries of varying lengths. These vary from mythological and similar references or sources for particular art works to journal-like entries of experiences or personal qualities going with a work, and sometimes a mix of both. With the oil painting Icarus (2006), O'Neil succinctly relates in his own words the myth of Icarus. With the chine colle monotype named High Desert (1996), his text beings, "The effect on my eyes is mesmerizing...."
O'Neil's works are grouped under the four headings External World, Internal Realm, Symbols, and--the fourth--Myth, Ceremony, Ritual. The styles and subject matter of the works are only loosely related to the titles of the sections. Many of the works could be placed in another or with some, in any other group. Taken most broadly, O'Neil's art can be seen as a somewhat New Age variety. The luminous tone of his art, not the compositional elements or the subject matter, is what is most noticeable about it. Much of the art is abstract in the vein of decorative, geometric, and biomorphic styles. Such luminous painting associated with mythology, spiritual states, and emotional experiences is identified with the Southwest; where O'Neil lives now after travels to Macchu Picchu, the Sea of Cortez, and other spots of natural beauty and spiritual excitement.
Works have been exhibited in galleries in New Mexico and California; and as some captions indicate, some are in private collections. The works do show a respectable skill and individualistic, freed imagination; though not sharpness or newness of vision or stylistic innovation. Within their limitations, O'Neil's art can be appreciated, mostly for their coloration, spiritual inducement, and regional association.