Artists and Writers In Their Own Words: Wayne Wolfson

Boplicity # 2 Collage by Wayne HW Wolfson

Northern Californian artist and writer Wayne H.W. Wolfson is completely self-taught and has had an expansive career. He has amassed a large body of work in a riot of colours and eclectic styles. This makes him one of the most striking, interesting and chameleon-like artists around.

I have written and compulsively doodled since my earliest years

Not that any of it was any good. I just kept at it long after everyone moved into the real and adult world, while working a long line terrible jobs. Although it’s a cliché to say this, I have always wanted to be an artist.

Many great artists were ignored for most their life. Their chops were garnered by just doing their thing, by following their own North Star

The biggest thing I see now is an over importance placed on social media numbers, likes, hits, retweets, reviews. Of course, there is no escaping having an online presence. Yet artists and creatives seem to be chasing these numbers to feel legitimised or to gain exposure.

This Little Piggy by Wayne HW Wolfson
This Little Piggy by Wayne HW Wolfson

It takes pressure to make a diamond, grit to make a pearl

If anyone wants to be in the game long term, there is no avoiding unpleasant aspects of it, which should not be feared nor avoided. My early years I could not even get arrested. Do the work, develop a voice and the rest will come.

This piece of mine is one of my favourites

“Green Pillow” 5x8 Watercolor & Paper 2018 by Wayne Wolfson
Green Pillow 5×8 Watercolor & Paper 2018 by Wayne Wolfson

One of the benefits of the internet is drawing in for inspiration from every era and style

It surprises me that a few decades before the internet, if you were a fan of one school or style, then it was forbidden to proclaim your admiration for things outside of that. Since the internet, it’s no longer a big deal to like diverse styles. I am all over the place with mine. Here are some of my favourite artworks:

  • The Window by Henri Matisse (1869 –1954) Even with the risk of over familiarity, his work still radiates joy.
  • No. 8 White Stripe by Mark Rothko (1903 –1970) is another favorite, he has a work “White Center” that is at LACMA, knocks me out every time, although there is no bad Rothko’s.
  • Carcass of Beef by Chaim Soutine (1893 –1943) is one of my favorites, I have yet to see images online of his work which do them justice, expressionistic like Van Gough but he was his own man. A treasured memory for me was getting to go to his grave in Paris and leaving my brush on it.
  • Self-portrait Detail by Tintoretto (1518- 1594) A great mannerist painter. His work did not show subjects idealized but with bad skin, watery eyes. He showed how the real can be oddly beautiful.

Music is my main influence for everything I do in both visual art and writing

I have an obscene number of CD’s, plus amazon music. I listen to a lot of stuff, but mainly to classical and jazz and different Boiler Room sets. I like Kini Rao, Kruder & Dorfmeister, Pinkcourtesyphone. My go-to creative music is Mahler, Stravinsky, Morton Feldman, John Coltrane and Thelonious Monk.

I am very fortunate to be able live in Paris a little each year

The place continues to do it for me. I know my side of the river, my arrondissement by heart. Yet every year, I still find new things and continue to be delighted by the familiar sights as well.

Arrondissement by Wayne Wolfson
Arrondissement Painting by Wayne HW Wolfson
Left Bank Slice by Wayne Wolfson
Left Bank Painting by Wayne HW Wolfson

Giving advice to other artists is like being in an ouroboros

Giving advice to other artists is like being in an ouroboros

Someone young is being given advice by someone older with the precursors of “No, listen I was where you are at now.” Then eventually they find themselves being the older person saying “No, really listen..”

Check out my website Terrible Beauty which links to all of my stuff including my blog

I have a few exciting things in the works, but the pandemic has made releases wonky. I know this is least of problems one could face during these times. Feel free to get in touch with me for any creative opportunities or to buy my art.

Check out my art for sale on Saatchi Art

Visual art and writing website

Visual art blog

My latest short story collection

Published by Content Catnip

Content Catnip is a quirky internet wunderkammer written by an Intergalactic Space Māori named Content Catnip. Join me as I meander through the quirky and curious aspects of history, indigenous spirituality, the natural world, animals, art, storytelling, books, philosophy, travel, Māori culture and loads more.

6 thoughts on “Artists and Writers In Their Own Words: Wayne Wolfson

    1. You are so welcome Wayne, I am really glad you wanted to be a part of this. Your work is so interesting and unique, I especially love your collages, they are beautiful and just a tiny bit menacing and disturbing too, I am not sure if that was the intention?

      Liked by 2 people

      1. I like to leave my work open to interpretation as to allow the audience to get something new from it each time they view it. I do believe all beauty has a component of something disturbing to it, if in no other way than how we need a bit of it in our lives.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. That is so true Wayne and what a very interesting philosophical way to put it, what is beautiful is also beguiling and slightly creepy!

        Liked by 1 person

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