The Trail from Mally Skok to Robert C. Jackson

The other day, as I was leaving the design center with bags full of samples, Mally Skok was entering the building.  We stopped to say hello to one another, and Mally asked me, “So, what’s inspiring you lately?”  I thought…maybe she’s referring to my bags of samples?  But to give her my top-of-mind answer, I told her that quite honestly, SHE had inspired me!  — as the previous week, I had attended a presentation that Mally had given about “Developing a Textile Line,” and the journey of her process.  Each and every one of Mally’s fabric designs has a story behind her inspiration, as well as a story behind its development — from her initial watercolor paintings and sketches, to her execution of the layout and scale.  What struck a chord with me is Mally’s commitment to continue to keep her designs true to her vision, not succumbing to market trends, and keeping the process pure and hand silk-screened.

However, my guess was that Mally had wanted a different answer, so as I looked to the window display where we had been standing, I pointed something else out to her.  On a dining table was a row of colorful glazed apples in black, white, pink, yellow, green and turquoise — the simplicity of the repetition and their glossiness, stopped me as I had first passed the showroom earlier that morning.  The apples reminded me of an artist I had discovered in my twenties — Robert C. Jackson.

Robert Jackson paints still lifes of apples, oreos, cakes, candy, balloons and colorful vintage crates.  His paintings tell stories about the playfulness in human nature — replicating sticky situations and mischievous behavior that is witty, ironic and whimsical.   They make me happy and make me laugh!

Three of my favorites:

Pretty as a Picture -- oil on linen 46" x 50"

Pretty as a Picture — oil on linen 46″ x 50″

Apples and Oranges - oil on linen 48" x 56"

Apples and Oranges – oil on linen 48″ x 56″

Crossing - oil on linen 48" x 72"

Crossing – oil on linen 48″ x 72″

…and a video, I found on Arden Gallery‘s site, about his process:

I think Mally should do some of these videos!  Now, how about them apples?

images © and courtesy of Robert C. Jackson



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