'I have photographed a couple hundred men who come from a variety of backgrounds. I have worked with a guy who installs air conditioners, a bull rider, a few military veterans, rock climbers, MMA fighters, ex-convicts, heroin addicts and many other people who didn't really think of themselves as models. I hope my art conveys how beautiful and intriguing each one of them are.'
Last month, when putting together Noplacia's work with Warren Russell (DirtRoad), I also included for the first time some of photographer Gary Larson's drawings of Warren. (Erotic Authenticity) Each time that I have done a piece on Gary's images of Warren I have been intrigued by the pose and shot choices made. When Gary shared that most of his work as a photographer was actually part of his drawing process, the interesting body positions he captured made it all come together.
Gary prefers to shoot a model, then work on the drawings later. This way, Gary can create his art on his own time using the photos as a reference. 'This way, I can put on some music and take all the time I want to experiment and create the art.' Sometimes, the drawings come out looking similar to the photographs, sometimes, it can be one pose or body gesture that inspires a drawing. This month, Gary's drawings will be on display for a show at the God Hates Robots gallery in Salt Lake City
'Aaronic Configuration tells stories about 25 men exhibited in his work. Relying on hundreds of photos he captured of the models, G. S Larson transfers their forms on to colorfully textured backdrops. Hints of emotion, bits of back-story and details about the interactions held between the artist and his models come through in this narrative approach to depicting the male figure.'
Gary's show opens on May 19th and runs through June 9th. If you're in the Salt Lake City area, drop by and check it out! With his show about to open, I asked Gary about where his love of figure drawing came from, and asked for some photographs to include with the drawings. The process piece is always of interest to me and I love viewing the raw unedited images along with the completed art piece. Gary puts his stamp on his drawings so beautifully in his work. It is especially fascinating to me how the depth of emotion, and complexities of the man drawn, seem so much starker, and more real in Gary's drawings than in the images that inspire them.
'I'm a fan of art that is about people. I found a book of figure drawings by Rodin at a bookstore in Berlin around 2002 that captivated me. I later collected many other books of figure drawings by Klimt, Schiele, Matisse and other artists from the last century. Their work inspired me to want to create figure-based art as well. I first worked with women because I knew a few that were willing to pose, but I really wanted to work with the sex that was less represented in figure art. With some practice I started finding men willing to pose and I started figuring out my method.'
'The photoshoots are a collaboration between the models and I. We both bring ideas to the table and try to capture the model in their best form. I could print out the photos and be done, but I prefer to put the photos through one more filter by creating the drawings. That way I am putting a little more of myself in the work. The finished pieces then have complexity to them. They say something about me because I made the color, composition and model choices. They also document the interaction the models and I had. Most importantly, they are portraits of an interesting human being who came to the project with emotions, personality and a lot of past experiences.'
I first noticed Brian Kerwin in 1990 during his time playing Jackie's boyfriend on Roseanne. 'Gary' was initially seen as the perfect guy for Jackie, and the blonde and beautiful Kerwin certainly fit the bill. Gary's dark side quickly came out, and I remember being shocked at his abusive turn and impressed at the performances from Kerwin and Laurie Metcalf.
Kerwin with Laurie Metcalf (Roseanne)
I think the next time I saw Kerwin, it was a few years later when he was starring along side Michelle Pfeiffer in Love Field. Googling Brian a few years later led to my learning more about his impressive career. Kerwin has done it all, stage, screen and television. On stage, he has appeared in classics such as August: Osage County, The Little Foxes and Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?. He also appeared on stage in Harvey Fierstein written Torch Song Trilogy, and went on to play Ed in the film adaptation.
On television, Kerwin has starred in soaps, sit-coms and dramas, epic mini-series and television movies. Brian has appeared on some of television's biggest hits of the eighties ranging from St. Elsewhere through a turn on The Love Boat. His biggest claim to fame on TV was most likely his role as Deputy Birdie Hawkins on the short lived BJ & the Bear spin-off, The Misadventures of Sheriff Lobo
Kerwin is one of those actors who has worked steadily since starting in Hollywood in the 70's. In addition to his impressive stage and TV resume, on screen Kerwin has worked with some of Hollywood's biggest stars including; Pfeiffer, Sally Field, Diane Lane, Robin Williams, Julianne Moore, Sissy Spacek.
Like so many of the actors I have featured, Kerwin is another of those actors that really deserved more acclaim and fame that he has received. Kerwin has been in huge Oscar winning films like The Help, and big stinkers like King Kong Lives. Having seen The Help, it was the latter I had to find and watch when I began to put together this piece.
With Matthew Broderick and Harvey Fierstein in Torch Song Trilogy (1988)
The Blue & the Gray (1982)
King Kong Lives (1986)
I love a bad monster movie and King Kong Lives is B A D! The 1986 sequel to the 70's King Kong features Kerwin and Linda Hamilton trying to save both Kong, and a new female ape discovered in the jungle by Kerwin's character. As bad as the story and special effects were, I had fun watching the flick and especially like the role reversal with Kerwin being 'the damsel in distress'. It wasn't Linda Hamilton picked up and loved by the new ape, it was Kerwin who had her total affection.
I didn't really think there was enough material for an Actors & Skin piece on Brian Kerwin. When I started, I thought his role in 1985's Murphy's Romance was his only nude scene. In the flick, Kerwin plays Sally Field's ex, and there is brief butt scene as he is heading into the shower. Given how it's filmed, I also wondered if that butt actualy belonged to Kerwin. A little research however, was able to give me another butt scene that I could compare...
Wet Gold (1984)
Although no nudity, Kerwin has shown a fair bit of skin on television. In 1984's Wet Gold, Kerwin stars along with Brooke Shields and 80's hottie Tom Byrd in a tv movie set mostly on a boat. Although I haven't seen the movie, the few Youtube clips that watch, showed that Kerwin and Byrd were shirtless for much of the movie.
Stripping off his suit on The Love Boat (1981)
Kerwin played a stripper when he went cruising, stripping town to some shiny briefs. Thanks to Scenes of Male Skin for the clip.
Murphy's Romance (1985)
Hometown U.S.A (1979)
Sooo, that comparative butt scene.... A little searching told me Kerwin had another butt scene in 1979's Hometown U.S.A. In the American Graffiti knock off, Kerwin puts on his James Dean, and his red leather jacket, to play T. J. Swackhammer. In the film, Kerwin has his beautiful thrusting butt, shown in the same scene as his face.