I’m an avid Tour de France watcher — in fact I don’t miss much of the 21-stage tour that rolls over punishing terrain, up excruciating mountain climbs, and at times drops off into scandal and early defeat. The first leg of the tour this year is a Time Trial in Monaco. So who are current or past Monaco artists? I googled “monaco artists,” “monaco museums,” and only when googling the latter did I find the following (!):
OK, I’m not much for naval stuff or old cars. But I can’t hold it against Monaco because the entire principality is only 2 square miles, and it has only 30,000 residents. It is known for having “a rich legacy of art and culture,” however, and so this might mean it hosts a feeding frenzy of foreign-born artists. I decided to turn to a foreign-born artist who has at least used Monaco as the subject of a painting or two: John Dyer.
If you’ve see John Dyer’s work, you can never miss it again. At the risk of sounding flippant, I think I’ve seen his work as the ubiquitous image on all $5.99 frames at Michaels. But given a second look, I’m engrossed. I’m happy. I’m ready to head to the tropics.
His exhibit coming up in Monaco this summer, “Singing and Zinging,” is filled with (according to the program)
the essence of locality with great love and humor. Swimmers, sunbathers, dogs and seagulls are all portrayed with his characteristic zest for life.
So there you have it. One artist whose work is simply, well, a feast for the eyes. His works are playful, tropical. However, I have a fun twist for you…
Check out the below photo. See the ballet dancers, but what’s in the background? The same artwork as at the top of this post! Dyer painted a special collection for the “Palais de Cristal” ballet in Menton, France, which was featured as the backdrop on stage. Each features a particular bird and crystal color. He’s got niche AND kitsch.