Artist Chuck Middlekauff

An example of fine art by Chuck Middlekauff

Photo of Chuck Middlekauff
  • FASO Artist Website: http://chuckmiddlekauff.com

  • Year Born: 1948

  • Booth Western Art Museum/Legacy Gallery Exhibition and Show 2009 and the Museum has Purchased Some of My Paintings

  • Southwest Art Magazine - Feature Article March/April 2019

  • Donna Howell-Sickles' Davis & Blevins Gallery Solo Show 2018

  • Price Range: $1,200.00 - $8,500.00

The Artist Says:

I have a passion for the open road, garage band music, and the icons of the American West. Going back to Roy Rogers and the Lone Ranger, heroes when I was a kid, the distinctive qualities of cowboys touch something inside me. It’s the rugged softness of their jeans, cracks and holes in their boots, the angle and shape of their hat, and their overall posture and attitude. But beyond that, I paint what cowboys do when they’re not roping cows. They fix bikes, dangle yo-yos, and eat M & M's.
So I paint things that might not appear together in real life, but in my mind they could. I add toys, license plates, diner booths, vintage pickups, battered neon signs, and ragged billboards. And murals on old buildings inspire me to paint some things as if they’re painted on weathered wood. I love Andy Warhol's stuff, so I regularly include some of his images in my work (Marilyn Monroe, Campbell's Soup Cans, etc.). To add more layers of interest and color, I leave some arts of the canvas "unfinished" and then I splatter, drip, and drop paint onto the painting, then I paint images of my brushes, pencils, and other art tools on top. So you have a painting of a painting in progress, or I like to think I'm giving the viewer the same feeling I have when I'm painting to my favorite music, classic rock of the 50's, 60's, 80's, country and western, even some blues, especially the Beatles, John Mellencamp, and Alan Jackson.
I think the garage-band style of my work appeals to my fans, so it’s okay if they mention the fun lighting, colors, subjects, and titles—but not the refined technique. The bottom line: I like to make people smile.
I'm still amazed that God has seen fit to have my work represented in so many of America's best galleries, as well as giving me the opportunity for a one-man exhibit and show at the Booth Western Art Museum in Cartersville, Georgia, that then traveled to the Legacy Gallery in Scottsdale - sold a bunch of them, too. And the wonderful contemporary western art museum has even purchased some of my paintings for their permanent collection! 

Collectors Say:

Western Art &Architecture says:
Chuck Middlekauff’s vibrant retelling of the American West through billboards, surfboards, Coke cups, candy wrappers, pay phones, toys, records and stuff from the workbench brings a fresh perspective to nostalgia. Excerpting fragments of roadside reality with bits of pop culture, Middlekauff’s West reflects the modern cowboy at rest, the iconic gas pump encased in memorabilia, a time-weathered billboard offering a night’s rest.
His bold color vocabulary speaks to the heart of Americana, regaled in pageantry and showmanship. Middlekauff’s motifs undergo a degree of transform- ation, filtered through his memory, rusted by his own childhood recollections, ringed with a collagist’s humor.
Seth Hopkins of Booth Western Art Museum, Cartersville, Georgia, says:
“I believe Chuck Middlekauff is one of the keenest observers of the contemporary West. His paintings are a mirror showing us who we are and who we were. He is also capturing icons that may be lost within the next generation.”

Dealers Say:

Ginger Richards of Legacy Gallery says:
"Chuck Middlekauff has traveled by car around America his whole life and is always inspired by what he sees on his travels. He recreates Route 66 and the western culture. He uses bright colors and many techniques to create fine art with an entertaining twist. Many of his subjects are nostalgic, and others are humorous and always clever."
Donna Howell-Sickles of Davis & Blevins Gallery, Saint Jo, Texas says:
“[Chuck's} titles add yet another level of creativity, so his paintings and ideas seem to expand the longer they are viewed. His work is moving toward more color, more layers, more details, making it perfect for today’s West. The work is a fresh pop twist on the West.” 




Bio - The Quick Read
I do my artwork for the love of it, for the fun of it, and to share what I see and feel. Like Norman Rockwell, one of my many artist heroes, I want others to experience the things of our culture and of days gone by, but in a fresh, exciting, and unusual way.
My passion for the open road, classic rock and roll and country music, and the cultural icons of America (especially the American West) shows up in my paintings. Often focusing on what cowboys do when they're not chasing cows, I set them on fences, playing with a yo-yo or eating M&Ms, wearing dusty jeans and crusty boots.
And sometimes I just paint the jeans and boots. I never know what I'll find to put with them (or sometimes without them): Marilyn Monroe, aging Coke signs, dilapidated billboards, rusty cafe and motel signs, toys, trucks, and cartoons, as long I can paint them old and weathered, full of colors and textures. I might even collage on some real 45 records or a license plate, just for the fun of it.
By combining the past with the present, putting things together that don't necessarily appear together (but they could) and adding touches of humor, even sentimentality, I want my paintings to be fun and surprising (for me and for collectors), and to evoke a rich nostalgia for things that may soon be gone.
I hope viewers will be entertained and reminisce with me as I paint what I grasp from all that nostalgia. The puns and twists in my combinations of shapes, subjects, textures, colors, splatters, drips, art tools, and titles add to the FUN.
It's my unique vision of America.
P.S. Carol and I spend [...]

Read the rest of this bio on the artist's website >>

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