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The classic music and performers I have loved since childhood have never stopped filling my life with utter joy.
My glittery artwork is how I choose to honor them
Michael Weisman was born in Pelham Manor, NY in 1962.
As a young child he spent countless hours watching the fabulous TV variety shows of the era and listening to Top 40 radio with his mother while she did her housework.
He loved the catchy music and was mesmerized by the elegance, glitz and drama of the performers and groups, always set against sparkling technicolor pop art backdrops. Though he was very young, the imagery and sounds were fast becoming ingrained in his DNA, so much so, that by the time he reached high school, he was a full-blown and obsessive "oldies" freak., forcing his friends to attend revival concerts featuring artists such as Lesley Gore, the Shangri Las, Jay and the Americans, the Crystals etc... and defiantly blaring girl group records from his burgeoning collection on the phonograph in the school library (at great risk to his reputation and physical well being).
He spent his four years as an art student at New York University occasionally attending classes, but mainly obsessively scouring Manhattan for any available imagery of his favorite girl groups, no small feat in the pre-historic days before Google. He subsequently used all he was able to find as the inspiration for hundreds of drawings and caricatures. He loved what he made, and the intimate connection it gave him to his revered subject matter. However, at that point he was convinced that nobody else could possibly be interested in his work or its specific and out dated focus (these, of course, were the days of Disco, Punk and New Wave)...so he timidly kept it to himself.
His artistic output waxed and waned over many years, while he navigated his way through a succession of retail jobs, until finally ending up with a store of his own in East Hampton, NY. He had all but given up the concept of creating art by the time he chose to close the store in 2005. But, thanks to the relentless prodding and coercion from friends and family, he threw some of his old work onto a rudimentary website, and hung a few on the walls of his shop prior to its closing.
To his shock and pleasant surprise, the response was overwhelming...turned out there were a lot of people out there who felt the same way he did about the music and performers he loved. And, as if that weren't encouraging enough, shortly after that he received a call from the lead singer of one of his all-time favorite groups, the Exciters (Tell Him THAT you'renevergonnaleavehim....), who let him know she had seen a painting he had done of the group on a Google search, that she loved it, and was so grateful he was using her group as inspiration for his artwork. An absolute dream come true!
That call, and his subsequent regular contact via Facebook and Instagram with her as well as other ladies and gents from the classic groups of the 1960's, have triggered a wealth of inspiration and explosion of confident and creative output Michael had never anticipated. These days it is practically all he does when he is not running the Golden Eagle, his current shop for art supplies in East Hampton.
Oh yes...there's also the JEWELS....
What can be said? Everything just looks better covered in jewels!
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