By Christine Tumpson
This holiday season, WHIRL is giving the Gift of Art. Artists Baron Batch, Dave Klug, and Burton Morris share one of their favorite creations with us in the hopes that these pieces will be torn from the magazine — as what is known in the publishing industry as “tear sheets.” They are then to be taped, stuck, or glued to the wall; put into frames and given as gifts; or placed in your home.
Medical studies establish that surrounding your living spaces with artwork is inspirational, motivational, and creativity-inducing. Colors and shapes require different brain activity to process and lead to thoughts being disrupted from routine patterns. That alone is magical thinking.
The artists chosen for the debut of the Gift of Art, sponsored by Dollar Bank, are exceptional in their talents, their dedication to creating art, and their willingness to share their experiences. Their accessibility in the local community is a testament to their generosity, and their presence on the national stage as successful entrepreneurs is a mark of their hard work.
Supporting the arts is a long-standing community rally in Western Pennsylvania, and the idea to create art collectors is something we are taking seriously.
Artist Burton Morris is best known for his bold, graphic pop art depictions of various modern icons. His subject matter includes everyday objects that portray today’s popular culture. His distinctive style is characterized by radiant black outlines and vivid colors that emit energy in all of his artwork.
Burton Morris was born in Pittsburgh in 1964. He earned his bachelor of fine arts degree at Carnegie Mellon University in 1986. After graduation, Burton started a career as an art director in advertising. He established the Burton Morris Studios in 1990. That year, he also began making his small post-pop icons into large-scale paintings. He would choose one subject per composition to create what he calls “an instant happening” for the viewer. He used his background in advertising to blur the lines between high and low art.
Baron Batch, referenced as “The Artist,” is a cultural icon, community builder, dot connector, conceptual multimedia artist, and entrepreneur based out of Homestead. He originally gained popularity through his street art, and has since brought the POP-X genre of art, a mix of Pop Art, and expressionism to the City of Pittsburgh.
Major publishers have relied on Dave Klug for eye-catching graphics. Corporations call him for character development and image branding. And institutions that work with him have much success.
Along with the famous murals at Primanti Bros. nationwide, a 78’ mural for Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield at the PPG Paints Arena, and work seen throughout the Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium, his talents have spread out to the pet lover and veterinary community with Klugworld, the company he and his lovely wife, Patricia, started. His work brings a sense of whimsy and emotional connection to our animal companions.
Klugworld is proud to be part of Handmade Arcade again this year on December 3 at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center. He’ll be showcasing new limited edition work and one-of-a-kind woodcut art pieces. Early bird specials will be available to shoppers.