Wednesday, October 7, 2009


Time for an art break. And just in time. On this, the eighth anniversary of the start of the war in Afghanistan, when the partisan rhetoric continues to mount to even more surreal levels, sometimes the only response (after we've done what we can to fight for what we believe needs to be done to resolve that conflict) is to find some art that revives a sense of the amazing capacity humanity has to transcend the unfairness of so much in life, including the reality that those most often with less—fewer of the rewards of life in this country—end up doing the dirty work (like fighting our wars).

The art of Nikkie Nash is the break I needed. I just added her web site to my recommended list on the right. Check it out and hit all the links to the other pages besides her home page for a taste of her talent and her wit (and hit on the images of her paintings to enlarge them and really get the impact of all that goes on in them).

Nikki was a good friend of mine in my years in "Hollywood." Her day job was behind the scenes in show biz, the kind of jobs that demand manual labor and organization. She could as easily have worked in front of the cameras, like had her own TV show, because she was not only one of the most attractive women in that world, but one of the funniest.

Her wit was always so quick and on target, it would have intimidated me if it was mean spirited in any way. But it never was. It was just funny in a self-aware but gentle way. You can see it at work in the comments on her site on the various pages, especially in the photos of her "at work" which also show how foxy she is, in or out of costume.

But it's her paintings that are the focus of the web site. In the ten years since I left CA for NJ, Nikki's been busy building a body of work that is as attractive and as witty as she is. And as original. There is no one doing what she's doing—her subjects and the ways she approaches them with the kind of humorous takes that are not only instantly funny but have a delayed impact that creates deeper meanings that are even funnier, and more telling.

Her technique is impeccable, her perspective original, and the results delectable. But don't take my word for it, go back up to the link above and check it out for yourself.


Anonymous said...

i love nikki nash

-K- said...

I came to watch the Rep. Grayson video that I wasn't able to watch yesterday but when I read your recommendation, I chose her site instead and I'm glad I did. I enjoyed everything I saw but especially the Wayne Thiebuad influence that she mentioned in her statement. It can't be easy to incorporate all the funny/sad, bitter/sweet qualities of life into a painting. I wish I had time to look at them again.

Ed Baker said...

Hey Michael thanks

Niki Nash

...a breath of fresh air

a point of view with a sense

sort of a then as nw (The 60's in the right now..



I sure dig the way she "dresses" when approaching her canvases

in her "at work" section


a pleasant discovery for me...

her back-grounds.. adds a narrative to the out-front images

terrific technique with the oils AND the brush

Jamie Rose said...

Her stuff is fantastic. I have a Giclee print of one of her paintings. Operation. I love it.

Anonymous said...

I agree with your characterization, Michael. She's unforgettable. When I met her in the 80's, it seemed working in a TV control room was like hiding... Glad the creativity found a way out.