CONVERSATION WITH JON PARLANGELI

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Name:   Jon Parlangeli

Years in Detroit?  All my life, painting since 1991

Years working as an artist?  1991 to present

Preferred medium?  JUST PAINT! ANY PAINT, ALL PAINT!

What is currently your favorite:

Website:  It’s a tie between Huffington Post and Paddle 8.

Work of Art:  Not one work, but Frank Stella’s “Moby Dick” Series of sculpture.

Piece of advice:   Work very, very hard, without fear, don’t spend time on your mistakes unless you are learning from them and always be yourself.

Do you collect anything?  Art.  Passionately.

Was there an artist you admired that inspired you to be an artist yourself?
If I had to pick my earliest inspiration it would have to be Picasso.  I was enraptured with his form and use of line.

Is there a particular local artist whose work you admire?
This goes years back, but Richard Kozlow.  When I was just starting out I met him and began visiting his studio regularaly.  He was kind enough to let me sit, ask questions and just hang around and soak it all in.  I wish he were still here so that I could thank him for all the sage advice and inspiration to live the life of an artist.

What themes do you tend to pursue in your work?
Living in the communication age, politics and the breakdown of family and society.  Mix all that with some history and comedy.

Where are you finding inspiration lately?
In the works of John Chamberlain.

Is there a single habit that you strongly believe contributes to your success as an artist?
Work hard and always innovate.  Never be afraid to grow.

How do you feel about the art market / scene in Detroit? Have you seen a shift in the last few years?
There is certainly international attention on Detroit right now.  I also feel that art awareness is up locally which is creating a new gallery and collector base.  Things are certainly looking up as compared to years past, but we are not there yet.

What are you looking forward to most about the upcoming exhibition?
Seeing this new body of work in its totality, in a space that will allow the artworks to resonate their energy and vitality both individually and together as a cohesive group.

What one item would you grab if your house were on fire?
As an art collector that is a tough question, but there is a painting my wife and I purchased in the south of France on our honeymoon.  It’s rich in color and story, and I consider it to be Seminole to our collection.

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