April 6, 2017

On the Bowery

"On the Bowery," acrylic, spray, and collage on birch panel, 36x48in.

Years ago I visited a splinter of my family that migrated from northeastern Italy south to a small town in the eastern Sicilian hills called Vizzini. We were sitting around the kitchen table talking about, what else, pasta. Someone said that if they didn't eat at least one big pastasciutta a week they didn't feel well, and everyone nodded.

The problem with cliches is they stick, and the problem with stereotypes is they contain an ounce of truth.  And so I too can't go a week without a heaping plate of bucatini ("little holes"), farfalle ("butterflies"), or especially strozzapreti ("priest-stanglers").

And similarly, I can't seem to go too long either without painting a good ol' busy, crowd-pleasing cityscape.

This one comes out my recent trip to New York City. On our last day, we walked the Manhattan Bridge and, acting the New Yorker, I tried to be all hipster and unphased about the panorama view. Secretly inside, though, I tingled and amazed and I couldn't wait to get back to my studio to geek out.

The view is of the Bowery, where William S. Burroughs sampled the world's medicine, Mark Rothko and Cy Twombly squiggled and sploshed paint, Béla Bartók composed breezy scores, and Patti Smith and the Ramones hollered at places like CBGB.

Big league!

For this and other genre pieces, check out www.ivanostocco.com.

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