Art :: Introduction

My journey as an artist is a rather strange odyssey. I have to acknowledge the powerful influence of my father for whom art was everything: he studied in Florence, Italy, in the l920s and after recovering from a debilitating illness 20 years later, took it up full time. His name was Itzhak Sankowsky. He produced a large body of work, expressionistic and modern, exhibiting paintings and sculpture in many galleries and donating/selling them to organizations and private parties (for example, the governor of Pennsylvania in the early 1970s).

But my dad did not push me toward art at all. As a child, I gravitated to drawing pictures of whatever held my interest, such as cars and cowboys and dinosaurs. Then, as a pre-teen, I lost all inclination to express myself in this manner as well as to appreciate anyone else’s efforts. When my dad took me to see a Picasso show (I was 10), I suffered through it, not having a clue as to what he or anyone else saw in it. I was only interested in sports at that point in my life.

It wasn’t until the age of 28 that something artistic stirred inside me. I happened to look at a jazz album and found myself drawn to the letters on the cover. For some reason, I was moved to copy them. Then someone gave me a bunch of magic markers. In my spare time, I fooled around with them, discovering almost scientifically how they behaved on very porous paper (cheap stuff, like memo pads). Slowly, I developed a style. In the next 10 years, I built up a repertoire of roughly 1500 little (5" x 8") "paintings."I have gone through many different stages, each represented by a gallery. This was not my father’s Oldsmobile, by any means.

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Essays on art and the making of art