|People Playing Pool and Killing Time|
|Waiting for the King of Birds to Appear|
|Shanti the Loveable Leopard|
|Day of Rest and Relaxation|
|Picasso Family Reunion|
|Live Music and Entertainment|
By Tom Wachunas
“It took me four years to paint like Raphael, but a lifetime to paint like a child.” – Pablo Picasso
“…So take a walk through Scott Simler’s re-imagined worlds and see how they challenge your notions about time, space, narrative, how beauty is created, and who it’s created by. I guarantee that the journey will be a delightful one - and that you’ll be changed by your travels.” - Craig Joseph, a curatorial mentor for this exhibit
EXHIBIT: Super Scott’s Magical Mashed Up World / art by Scott Simler, presented by Cyrus Custom Framing & Art Gallery, and Just Imagine Gift Gallery and The Workshops, Inc./ on view at Cyrus Custom Framing & Art Gallery, 2645 Cleveland Avenue NW, Canton / THROUGH JUNE 30, 2022 / gallery viewing hours Mondays-Fridays 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., Saturdays 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Once again, my apologies for such a late posting about a remarkable exhibit that’s closing in one week as of this writing. If you’ve not seen this show yet, make time. Please.
First, a few words about the artist from painter Vicki Boatright (a.k.a BZTAT). She works at Just Imagine Gift Gallery in downtown Canton (201 6th Street NW), where Scott Simler creates his invigorating work.
“Inspired by Picasso, Van Gogh and Gauguin, artist Scott Simler takes his cues from the masters. He adds his own imagination and magic happens. A true visionary, Scott uses simple brush strokes to create intricately painted scenes of joy and fun. Scott has emerged as a leading artist in the Canton Arts District, working out of the Just Imagine Gift Gallery, a unique arts program offered by Twi (The Workshops, Inc.) that empowers adult artists with developmental disabilities to discover their creative side.”
Scott Simler’s paintings aren’t mere imitations of the pioneering Modernist artists that inspire him - Picasso, Van Gogh, Gaughin, among others. He doesn’t outright copy a painting style so much as heartily embrace and converse with it. Communing with a legacy. Call it sympathetic dialogue. He remembers such conversations when he draws with paint, then re-contextualizes them into moments, scenes, indeed a world, of his own making. It’s a raw, uncomplicated world, but nonetheless electrifying – buzzing with bright colors and lively shapes, all bouncing and dancing with palpable glee.
You’ll find nothing sinister or threatening about Simler’s eye-popping paintings. Often droll, perhaps, but never dark. For example, of his famous The Night Café painting, Van Gogh wrote, “I have tried to express the idea that the café is a place where one can ruin oneself, go mad, or commit a crime.” Simler, though, in his People Playing Pool and Killing Time, transformed Van Gogh’s intensely agitated room into a place of radiant optimism.
Need a prescription to alleviate CCS (Chronic Cynicism Syndrome)? Take a long look at two (or three or four) Simler paintings. Warning: Side-effects include sensations of unmitigated joy.