Michael Finnegan Art

About

 
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Engage with life.

Water, jazz, carpentry, and Francis Bacon

I was made in Hawaii and raised on the Chesapeake Bay and Oahu. I've lived and worked in Seattle, Washington and on Deer Isle, Maine. My Chicago studio is a short walk to Lake Michigan. Water, light, and color strongly influence my work. See the pattern?

But there's more to my art, it's kind of tough to explain. Here goes.

A big chunk of my being is music. A typical 70's kid with a passion for Hendrix and the electric guitar brought me to the Berklee School of Music as a young man. There I realized that I don't listen to music as much as I see it. I see color in it. I see pulse in rhythm. It's physical to me, something I can touch.

Ultimately, holding  something I made is why I fell in love with carpentry—crafting objects people interact with every day. I spent much of my professional life as a stair builder and carpenter.

These experiences fuse together in my art. I paint on three-dimensional surfaces constructed out of furniture-grade plywood and other materials, including Kevlar and velvet. My studio practice includes the use of pencils, a laptop, sable brushes, industrial HVLP spray guns, hand tools and power tools, adhesive vinyl, and acrylic paint.

Who are my influences?

Francis Bacon drew me into visual art, but my work has evolved into what may be seen as hard-edged abstraction. Although the influences of Josef Albers, Johannes Itten, and even Bridget Riley are evident in many of my pieces, I’m not concerned with maintaining a strict tie to any one academic theory or artistic ideology such as minimalism.

 
 

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