The HELMET Project
At 8am on September 11, 2001, it was easy to perceive our lives as serene;
Even while Bernie Madoff’s crimes were being exposed,
most saw our economy, our country,
as prosperous; we led
And while the scientific community embrac
es a vision of quantum mechanics and string theory,
shattering our basic understanding of the observable universe,
we are left behind only capable of viewing Newton’s world; we are blind.
We are a visually biased society, living in a time in which we
longer believe in what we see.
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With good intentions, my subjects are passionately searching. They are engaged in the
proverbial, if not cliché
, pursuit of meaning, knowledge, experience, or truth. They are on the quest of‘ finding themselves,
looking externally and through the eyes andexperiences of others.
The children in these paintings, are still pure in this search,
determined and armed with a clear vision; naïve.
The adults however, begin their search for the elusive, already encumbered by all that
they bring to the search; that which they
know, have experienced and have come to believe.
While equally pure in their intentions, they have lost their innocence.
Isee my work as a natural blend of the macabre and the beautiful.
My paintings contain a
balance of euphoria and horror, and often center on the relationship and the fusion of
such opposites. I see the relationship of abstraction and realism, objective and non - objective painting, as a metaphor for the
complexities of our individual realities.
Life is not a still life nor is it a splash of red paint; but rather a multi - layered perception of the
observed and the created.
I prefer to see my work as a fusion of:
the physical and the spiritual,
the humorous and the solemn,
the intellectual and the passionate,
the perceived and the imagined,
the wonderful and the horrific,
the beautiful and the macabre.
Chiaroscuro has had a significant influence on my work, but certainly no more so than
the teachings of Kandinsky on the spirit of abstraction. In my work, chiaroscuro is a
device which joins and contrasts contemporary and personal content with historic
religious painting and acts like a lure in which to seduce the viewer. Though technique is
an important issue in my art, it is secondary and simply a complement to the concept of
the work. Painting is exciting today because there is no dogmatic style; each artist must
choose and develop his or her style as a complement
to his or her ideas, not because it is fashionable.
It is a wonderful time to be painting, as once again we have come to the realization that
the most important quality in art is not how the medium is manipulated but that passion
be the driving force behind it.
|THP-T1, Oil on canvas, mounted to a wooden panel, 30h x 22w, 2011
|THP-AC2, Oil on canvas, mounted to a wooden panel, 30h x 22w, 2011
|THP-D4, Oil on canvas, mounted to a wooden panel, 30h x 22w, 2011
|THP-C5, Oil on canvas, mounted to a wooden panel, 30h x 22w, 2011
|THP-A7, Oil on canvas, mounted to a wooden panel, 30h x 22w, 2011
|THP-M8, Oil on canvas, mounted to a wooden panel, 30h x 22w, 2011
|he HELMET Project, Installation, The Smoke House, 2011Photography: Liesa Cole, Omni Studio
|The HELMET Project, Installation, The Roundhouse, 2011 Photography: Bradley Boyd and John Cook Photography
|The HELMET Project, Installation, Corporate Lobby, 2011Photography: John Cook Photography
|The HELMET Project, Installation, Episcopal Church, 2012 Photography: John Cook Photography
|AD-VICE, oil on canvas inserted into wooden panels with mixed media, 84h x 64w, 2013
|The HELMET Project, Installation, Sloss Underpass, 2011 Photography: Liesa Cole, Omni Studio
|RE-ENGAGE SKETCH, oil and mixed media on wooden panel, 32h x 24w, 2010 SOLD
|RECREATION, oil/gold leaf on canvas, mixed media on wooden panels, 84h x 64w, 2008
|TO BE WITH YOU, oil and gold leaf on canvas, mixed media on wooden panels, 84h x 64w, 2010
|LIFE DURING WARTIME, oil/gold leaf on canvas, mixed media on wooden panels, 84h x 64w, 2006
|ENDEAVOR DETAIL, oil/gold leaf on canvas, 31h x 39w, 2008 SOLD
|ELIZABETH ANNE, oil/gold leaf on canvas, 48h x 37w, 2006 SOLD
|THE SWIMMER, oil/gold leaf on canvas, 46h x 59w, 2002
|MAN WITH BLACKEYE, LISTENING, oil/gold leaf on canvas, 32h x 39w, 2003, Collection of the Mobile Museum of Art
|MAN WITH BLACKEYES, oil/gold leaf on canvas, 32h x 39w, 2002 SOLD
|WOMAN WITH RIGHT ARM, oil/gold leaf on canvas, 59h x 46w, 2001
|WOMAN WITH RIGHT ARM, oil/gold leaf on canvas, 46h x 59w, 2001
|WOMAN WITH STICK, oil on canvas, 57h x 46w, 1998Image 1 of 15
|MAN WITH STICK, oil on canvas, 57h x 46w, 1998, Collection of the Wiregrass Museum of ArtImage 2 of 15
|BOB, oil and wax on canvas, 49h x 62w, 1988 SOLDImage 3 of 15
PROFESSOR OF PAINTING & DRAWING:
(MFA, Cranbrook Academy of Art; BA and BS, Berea College)
Chapman has had over 50 solo exhibitions with institutions such as The Montgomery Museum of Fine Arts, University of
Cincinnati, University of Georgia, and University of Miami. He has participated in numerous group exhibitions with regional,
national and international venues.
Chapman's work has received recognition and awards from such notable figures as Ned Rifkin, Dennis Barrie, John Ravenal,
Annette Carlozzi and Jack Cowart. In 2008 his work was selected and published in the book Alabama Masters: Artists and their
work. He has received numerous grants and fellowships including a 1996 National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship in Painting
from the Southern Arts Federation and 2001 and 1994, Individual Artist Fellowships from the Alabama State Council on the Arts.
His work has been reviewed extensively and is published in over 20 catalogs and books including the 3rd, 16th, 52nd and 88th
editions of New American Paintings.
Paintings by Chapman have been purchased for the permanent collections of 10 museums throughout the Southeastern region.
These include the Birmingham, Montgomery and Ogden Museums of Art.
His work is also included in many corporate and private collections throughout the country.