Amy Crehore in the studio getting ready for ‘Dreamgirls & Ukes’ coming up this February…

Amy Crehore recently checked in with us:
My solo exhibit at Thinkspace (February 13-March 6, 2009) is entitled Dreamgirls and Ukes. In this show, I will feature a new series of oil paintings of playful, iconic nudes and introduce some new characters (in addition to my cats, pierrots and monkeys): a lion, a tortoise, and large flying insects. Ukuleles will play a role in these narratives, giving the works musical ambience. Some of these dream sequences will take place in nature, others in curtained rooms.

I am also painting over a dozen antique ukuleles as part of this exhibit. Most of these instruments are from the American ukulele boom of the 1920’s. I have personally hand-picked a collection that represents a variety of styles and designs including banjo ukes, mahogany and koa ukes, as well as art deco novelty ukes. On these ukes, I will incorporate motifs from my paintings, plus I’ll be adding creative type and logo design. My long-time music partner, Lou Reimuller, is also a luthier and he has lovingly restored each of these instruments. These ukes are all “players” as well as fine art objects.

In addition, my band, The Hokum Scorchers (duo), will be giving a rare musical performance on opening night of blues, rags and jugband songs from the 20’s and 30’s. We have performed in the past at the Seattle Folk Festival, Bumbershoot and other northwest venues. We started the “Tickler” fine art ukulele company in 2007 (hand-built ukes) and the vintage ukuleles in this show will be called “Tickleroos”.

Background info:
Amy Crehore was born in the mountains of Virginia. She spent her childhood in the suburbs of Pennsylvania and New Jersey, but returned to Virginia to earn her BFA at Virginia Commonwealth University where she studied filmmaking, animation, photography and design. After college, she began to teach herself to paint with oils while earning a living as a graphic artist. It wasn’t long before her paintings were included in prestigious shows at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts and the Portland Art Museum. Playboy and Esquire took notice of her talents in 1991 and commissioned her for magazine spreads. Her double portrait of Jewel and Alanis Morrisette is included in Rolling Stone: The Illustrated Portraits (Chronicle Books, 2000).

In 2005, Amy Crehore made a splash with her playfully surreal, yet sensual, “Monkey Love” paintings at the first of two “Blab!” art shows in Santa Monica, CA. The following year, she debuted her “Blues Gal” series in the second “Blab!” show and exhibited some of her award-winning “Little Pierrot” paintings at Applegate Gallery, also located in Santa Monica.
Amy has been booked up ever since, showing her work at Roq La Rue (Seattle), M Modern Gallery (Palm Springs & Las Vegas), Corey Helford Gallery (Culver City), Robert Berman Gallery (Santa Monica), Copro/Nason (Santa Monica), Ad Hoc Art (NY), and Mark Murphy’s ‘Know’ exhibit at Art Basel in Miami as well as this past summer’s ‘Green’ exhibit that took place at Bergamot Station in Santa Monica
Amy Crehore has lived on the west coast in Eugene, OR for the past 20 years.

2005 – Selected Award, American Illustration 24, Amilis Publishing, NY, NY

2004 – Society of Illustrators Annual 46, NY, NY
Chosen Award, American Illustration 23, NY, NY

2003 – Selected Award, American Illustration 22, Amilis Publishing, NY, NY

2002 – Award of Excellence, Communication Arts Annual, Menlo Park, CA
Merit Award, SILA, Los Angeles, CA
Chosen Award, American Illustration 21, NY, NY

2001 – Merit Award, SILA, Los Angeles, California

1998 – Award of Excellence, Communication Arts Annual, Menlo Park, CA

1996 – Award of Excellence,Communication Arts Annual, Menlo Park, CA

1995 – Award of Excellence, Communication Arts Annual, Menlo Park,California

1994 – Honorable Mention, WESTAF/NEA Regional Fellowship in Painting

1993 – Crosscut Honor, 3 paintings (juried show representing best artists in OR), Portland Museum of Art, Portland, Oregon

1991 – Best of Show Award, Corvallis Arts Center 22nd Juried, Oregon

1986 – First Patrons Award, Phillips Mill 57th Annual Juried, New Hope, Pennsylvania

1979 – Virginia Artist Biennial Honor, Virginia Museum, Richmond


Crehore’s artwork has been featured in: Atlantic Monthly, “Blab! 17”, Business Week, ESPN/Disney, Esquire, Forbes, GQ, Guideposts, Harvard Business Review, Internet World, Islands, Kiplinger’s, Los Angeles Times, MS, New York Times, Outside, Oxford American, Parenting, Playboy, Prevention, Redbook, Rolling Stone, Texas Monthly, Utne Reader, Working Mother, Houghton Mifflin, Scholastic, Simon & Schuster, and many more.
Also, ”Rolling Stone: The Illustrated Portraits”(2000) “Boys and Girls Grow Up” comics publisher-Last Gasp distribution (1981-85), Richmond Arts Magazine (1979-80), “American Illustration”, “Communication Arts”, “Illustrators 46” annuals (Various issues, 1995-2005),
Look for new interviews coming up with Amy at Sadie Magazine (Dec, 2008) and Inked Magazine (Feb, 2009).

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