2016 Jan 26, 9:41pm
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“Power Imbalance” Receives Juror Award at Carnegie Center Competition, 2016

Power Imbalance has received a Juror Award at the 2016 installment of the annual art competition at the Carnegie Center for the Arts in Three Rivers, Michigan.

"Power Imbalance", 2014, Acrylic on Canvas, 16 x 20 in., by David Jay Spyker

“Power Imbalance”, 2014, Acrylic on Canvas, 16 x 20 in., by David Jay Spyker

Greg Waskowsky, one of three jurors for the exhibition, and now-retired Curator of Special Programs at the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts, wrote this wonderful paragraph about Power Imbalance:

In choosing a juror’s award from among the 2-D works, I was repeatedly drawn to David Jay Spyker’s Power Imbalance. I was impressed not only with how the artist used his considerable technique to capture the specific feeling of a landscape (such as the way in which the purplish light of the distant storm front is reflected off the dark waves in the foreground), but also how he subtly provides a symbolic dimension to the landscape, as evidenced by the tiny lights along the far shoreline. Taken as a whole, Spyker’s realism shows us that the world we live in is more mysterious and affecting than we might assume.

I really could not have said that better myself. My sincerest thanks go out to Greg.

"Power Imbalance", 2014, Acrylic on Canvas, Detail, by David Jay Spyker

“Power Imbalance”, 2014, Acrylic on Canvas, Detail, by David Jay Spyker

The most distant set of lights is at the nuclear power plant in South Haven, Michigan, where clouds of steam can be seen billowing back up over the shore.


2015 Oct 7, 7:05pm
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2015 Solo Show at Mixed Media Gallery, Saugatuck/Douglas, MI

I would like to invite you all to the opening reception for my solo show at Mixed Media Gallery on Saturday, October 10, 2015 from 6-8pm.

David Jay Spyker, "Convergence", 2014, Acrylic on Alupanel, 16 x 12 1/2 inches

“Convergence”, 2014, Acrylic on Alupanel, 16 x 12 1/2 inches

David Jay Spyker, "Power Imbalance", 2014, Acrylic on Canvas, 16 x 20

“Power Imbalance”, 2014, Acrylic on Canvas, 16 x 20 inches

David Jay Spyker - Photographing a Painting

Photographing “Harvest Tide” in the studio before delivery to the gallery.

The show runs Oct. 9-25, 2015. The beautiful lake shore towns of Saugatuck & Douglas are hosting their 38th annual gallery stroll October 10-11; enjoy visiting all the participating galleries and artist’s studios in the area.

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Artwork delivery at Mixed Media Gallery, Douglas, MI

 

Mixed Media Gallery
25 East Center St.
Douglas, MI 49046
(269) 857-873


2015 Jun 2, 1:54pm
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Sudden Flight at Muskegon Museum of Art

Sudden Flight will be included in the Muskegon Museum of Art’s 87th Regional Exhibition, which is open to all Michigan artists.

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The annual competition runs June 4 through August 5, 2015 with the reception June 4 from 5:30 – 8:00 pm.The Museum also has a small, but highly outstanding permanent collection with many superb paintings.

Muskegon Museum of Art
296 W Webster Ave, Muskegon, MI 49440
www.muskegonartmuseum.org


2015 May 21, 2:59pm
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Birds of a Feather Group Show, 2015

As the official grand re-opening, Mixed Media Gallery will be hosting a themed group exhibition titled “Birds of a Feather” starting over Memorial Day weekend.

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Come see some great art and meet some artists at the reception, May 23, 5:30 – 7:30 pm. I’ll have ten of my own pieces in the gallery with two of them as part of the group show. The exhibition runs two weeks.

Mixed Media Gallery
23 Center St.Douglas, MI 49406
(269) 857-8738
www.mixedmediadouglas.com

 


2015 Feb 5, 3:05pm
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Winter Art Festival Competition at Gallery Uptown in Grand Haven, Michigan

Opening Friday, February 6, 2015, the Winter Art Festival competition at Gallery Uptown in Grand Haven, Michigan includes sixty works by regional artists. I will be displaying The Last Days of Autumn, and The Last Days of Summer in the show, and hope to see you at the reception.

"The Last Days of Autumn", 2014, Acrylic on Hardboard, 27.75 x 46.25 inches, by David Jay Spyker

The Last Days of Autumn, 2014, Acrylic on Hardboard, 27.75 x 46.25 inches, by David Jay Spyker

The Last Days of Summer, 2014, Acrylic on Hardboard, 9 x 12 in., by David Jay Spyker

The Last Days of Summer, 2014, Acrylic on Hardboard, 9 x 12 in., by David Jay Spyker

The reception is on the 6th from 5:30 to 8:00 pm, with awards and comments by the juror presented at 7:00. The exhibition runs through February 28, 2015.
Gallery Uptown, 201 Washington Ave., Grand Haven, MI 49417
(616) 846-5460


2015 Jan 22, 7:23pm
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2015 Regional Competition at the Carnegie

My painting The Day Before November will be included in the 2015 Regional Juried Arts Competition at the Carnegie Center for the Arts in Three Rivers, Michigan. The opening reception will take place on January 25, 2015, from 2-4pm.

"The Day Before November", 2014, Acrylic on Hardboard, 8 x 10 inches, by David Jay Spyker

“The Day Before November”, 2014, Acrylic on Hardboard, 8 x 10 inches, by David Jay Spyker

Carnegie Center for the Arts, 107 North Main Street, Three Rivers, MI 49093
(269) 273-8882


“Double Take: Artists Respond to the Collection” at the KIA

When asked if I’d like to be part of Double Take at the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts, I was more than happy to participate. A show in which I get to pick a piece from the collection and create my own work in response, and then the two would hang side-by-side? Of course I wanted to do it!

Subsequently browsing the collection on the Institute’s website, then visiting the vault to see my possible selections in person was a treat. There is some really great art in the KIA’s collection. In the end, I chose a watercolor by Philip Jamison titled “Milkweed” as my companion piece.

Philip Jamison, American, b. 1925 Milkweed, ca. 1950-1960  Watercolor on Paper  Collection of the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts; Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Donald S. Gilmore  Copyright Philip Jamison, image used by permission of the artist

Philip Jamison, American, b. 1925
Milkweed, ca. 1950-1960
Watercolor on Paper
Collection of the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts; Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Donald S. Gilmore
Copyright Philip Jamison, image used by permission of the artist

The quiet atmosphere and solitude in Milkweed immediately made me think of a special place just a few miles from home, though I planned to paint my scene in a different season that was more personal to me.

As part of the exhibition, we were asked to write a short text speaking to the relationship of our work to our chosen piece, which would display with the paired art.

To me, Milkweed has a certain sense of quiet isolation, a solitude, which I am often looking for in my own work. When I manage to catch that mood in a scene, I feel like I’ve done something special with the painting. I can only imagine Philip Jamison must have the same sense of satisfaction when he captures a deep feeling in one of his own works.

There is a prairie tallgrass field north of Kalamazoo, and in early Spring, gentle breezes tickle last year’s dead stalks to create a quiet, pervasive whisper. If you stand for a while – with nothing but that dry rustling and the occasional bird song all around – and feel the changing vernal light and the zephyrs on your skin, you begin to get a sense of magic; it’s as if the whole world is whispering something unknown, yet deeply important.

"Whisper", 2014, Acrylic on Alupanel, 18 x 30 in.

“Whisper”, 2014, Acrylic on Alupanel, 18 x 30 in., by David Jay Spyker

I wrote to Mr. Jamison to tell him about the exhibition, and to ask if it would be alright to use the image of his painting for this article. What a thrill it was to read Philip’s letter in response! At 89 years of age he writes that he has been “unusually busy” lately. I hope to one day reach that age and still be busy making art.

"Whisper", 2014, Acrylic on Alupanel, Detail

“Whisper”, 2014, Acrylic on Alupanel, Detail, by David Jay Spyker

He also writes “I have used milkweeds in many of my paintings simply because they are so prevalent in my part of Chester County…. I have vases of them in my studio…. and they have been there for over forty years”. That got me thinking of when I was a kid wandering the woods and empty fields near my house in Rochester, New York, and how each year the milkweed pods were such a source of fascination.

It was irresistible to pluck them and pry them open; I’d get the sticky milk all over my fingers, and explore how the seeds were packed inside with their silky threaded parachutes. Later in the year, when the pods would eventually split open on their own, I just had to blow handfuls of those seeds into the air.

Even today, on walks through fields, it makes me happy to see milkweed plants, and sometimes I still stop to play with the pods.

Study for Whisper, 2014, Acrylic on Gessoed Paper, 12 x 17 7/8 in., by David Jay Spyker

Study for Whisper, 2014, Acrylic on Gessoed Paper, 12 x 17 7/8 in., by David Jay Spyker

“Double Take: Artists Respond to the Collection at the KIA” is at the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts from 8/16/2014 – 1/18/2015. The show features the works of thirty area artists displayed with their corresponding selections from the KIA’s permanent collection.

Jamison's Milkweed and Spyker's Whisper_KIA-1000px

Philip Jamison’s “Milkweed” with David Jay Spyker’s “Whisper”
hanging at the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts
Photo courtesy of the KIA

Kalamazoo Institute of Arts, 314 S. Park St., Kalamazoo, MI 49007
www.kiarts.org


2014 Sep 10, 3:25pm
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Great Lakes Juried Show – 5th Annual – 2014

See the painting “Sudden Flight” at the South Haven Center for the Arts from September 12 – October 26, 2014. The annual, five-state art competition takes place in South Haven, Michigan with an opening reception on Friday, September 12, 2014 from 5:00-7:00pm. Awards will be presented at 6pm with the judge’s remarks.

LIVE music. Cash Bar. Awesome Art, FREE – All Welcome!

South Haven Center for the Arts
600 Phoenix St.
South Haven, MI 49090
269-637-1041

 


At the Water’s Edge

You are invited to the opening of “At the Water’s Edge” this Friday, August 15, 2014 (5:30- 7:30 pm) at the Box Factory for the Arts in St. Joseph, Michigan. This solo exhibition features 25 recent works, and runs 8/15 – 9/27.

"The Last Days of Autumn", 2014, Acrylic on Hardboard, 27.75 x 46.25 inches, by David Jay Spyker

“The Last Days of Autumn”, 2014, Acrylic on Hardboard, 27.75 x 46.25 inches, by David Jay Spyker

The mood of a painting has always been very important to me. I
know I’m on the right track with a painting when I can start to feel
the subject – smell the water, taste the air, feel the temperature, hear
the wind or the waves.

I have an obsession with the changing seasons and the passage of
time. The way the light changes over the year is endlessly
fascinating. Weather is the same – it’s so amazing, something full of
wonder.

The season should be something you just instinctively know when
you look at the painting. If you can feel it too, then I’m on the right
track; if you’re also hearing the water or smelling the air, then I’m
really on the right track.

If I’m to have an interest in it, I need to really feel my subject, and if
I don’t have an interest in it, I won’t be able to find its essence and
bring it out in the end. It’s a sort of creative circle that needs to be
complete. Ultimately, I’m after the emotional character of the
subject.

“At the Water’s Edge”, Solo Show, Box Factory for the Arts, 1101 Broad Street, St. Joseph, MI 49085


2014 May 7, 10:12pm
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Solo Show Opening at the Art Center of Battle Creek, 2014

Just a few photos for you from the May 4 opening of “Eighteen Years” at the Art Center of Battle Creek. The turnout was very good – I met some very nice folks – and the show looks great. Linda, the Center’s director, did a great job hanging it. The exhibit will be up through May 24, 2014.

The show features fine examples of my work spread over the last eighteen years.

Art Center of Battle Creek
265 East Emmet St.Battle Creek, MI 49017


 
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