Artist Michael Parkes (1944 USA) is one of the world's leading artists in the field of Magic Realism. Michael Parkes is both a painter, sculptor and lithographer and makes paintings, lithographs and sculptures. His timeless artworks are collected by important private art collectors, museums and celebrities from all over the world. Marcel Salome of Salome Art Venture has been Michael Parkes' master printer since 2002 and both have been friends for decades. The art of Michael Parkes offered through Salome Art Venture therefore belongs to the top of his ouvre.
Michael Parkes was born in 1944 and studied graphic art and painting at the University of Kansas, after which he traveled for three years through Asia and Europe. In 1975 Parkes settled in Spain where he has since lived and worked.
With his fantasy worlds Michael Parkes is a fascinating and authentic exponent of contemporary figurative art. It is tempting to speak of dream worlds when discussing the art of Michael Parkes but Parkes' "dream worlds" rise above our own dreams in audacity, freedom and intensity. In the artworks of Parkes the laws of earthly reality are abolished and space and time come together and form a motionless whole. He joins together images with metaphysical and spiritual elements and forms a new reality. Michael Parkes' artworks evoke a mysterious atmosphere that often can only be explained using ancient mythology and eastern philosophy.
Michael Parkes about his work
"As human beings, we limit our sensory perception generally to what is pleasant and to what is present in everyday life. Because we limit our observations to what suits our individuality we miss the immensity of other observations and the doors to unlock those. Although we are conditioned to solely observe our own world that does not mean we could not enter other domains" - Michael Parkes.
Michael Parkes and Salome Art Venture
Marcel Salome and Michael Parkes have had a special bond for decades. They have worked together since 1996 and Marcel has been the master printer for Michael Parkes' "Masterworks on Canvas", "Masterworks on Paper" and "Masterworks on Vellum" since 2002. All of these very high-quality prints are created in Marcel's Fine Art Printing Studio Re-Art in The Netherlands.
Michael Parkes and Marcel together created the highly successful Swan King Editions poster line and made the books "The World of Michael Parkes ", "The Art of Michael Parks" and "The Art of Michael Parkes II". Besides their friendship there has developed a great mutual respect between Marcel and Michael for each other's expertise. To this day, Michael Parkes travels to the Netherlands to work on new editions or sketches for sculptures with Marcel.
"If there would be a top 5 of artists with prowess in he art of lithography Michael Parkes would be right up there", says Marcel Salome.
Michael Parkes says about Marcel Salome: "Until this day I have met no one working in graphic media that knows so much about so many different techniques at such a high level as Marcel."
Michael Parkes' place in art history
John Russell Taylor, art critic for the London Times and art editor for The New York Times says about Parkes: "If you compare Parkes with other artists working in the genre, the difference is immediately apparent. His technique is more artistic and his imagination is much less constricted. Parkes, like an artist such as Alma - Tadema, has also become exceptionally skilled in displaying veined marble and the textures of various materials as they linger and hang from the curves of his unattainable but inviting female figures."
"The art of Michael Parkes now reminds us of a Victorian painter, then Botticelli or Tiepolo, then (albeit less frequently ) Goya. But although these painters have undoubtedly all been studied by Parkes, he has incorporated them to become part of a completely modern consciousness. If we were looking for a 20th-century analogy, we might look to surrealists like Dali and Magritte."
"There is an essential difference however. In surrealism there is always a sense of tension and melancholy present under the unruffled surface. A fraction of that was still present in the earlier work of Michael Parkes: clowns and dwarves could be menacing looking and not all animals had safely withdrawn their claws. Yet Parkes always seemed to crave for peace and quiet and in his later work he has achieved that."