Sunday, August 16, 2015


Free standing cone fireplaces were first introduced in the 1950s.  There were three companies that manufactured them, Malm, Preway and Majestic.  Malm is the only one still in business.

Located in Sonoma County, California, Malm started as a sheet metal manufacturer in the 1950s, and some of the original employees dabbled in making fireplaces on the weekends. From weekend hobby sprang a full-fledged business.  Since the mid-20th century these fireplaces have been used in iconic modern spaces worldwide.

I love to include these fireplaces in my paintings of mid century interiors,  usually with a pet curled up nearby.  Here is my most recent effort.

These two are from 2012, when I first started interpreting mid century decor.



Sunday, July 19, 2015


TWA Terminal at LAX by architect Eero Saarinen.  !954 Concept Car

Concept cars were very popular with auto makers in the Space-Age 50's.  They were a way to show off futuristic design concepts and made for great advertising.  Most prototypes were made for car shows.  Very few ever went into production. 

In 1956, DC Comics (then called National Periodical Publications) officially licensed the first Batmobile to Oldsmobile. Forrest Robinson and friend Len Perham began modifying the car in 1960. They finished their work in 1963, beating the Burt Ward / Adam West Batman series by three years. The car is based on what the dynamic duo drives in the comic books; it's a far sleeker (if smaller) car than the 1939 Cadillac driven in the Batman movie serials of the 1940s.

Although the world and the auto industry never really pursued the Atomic Future,  These modern antiques are a fun look down memory lane.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

I'm not quite sure the attraction of fish, but they are clearly a dominant icon in Mid Century art and design.  I enjoy painting fish because they lend themselves to all sorts of abstractions and patterning.  I try to keep at least one fish painting in my gallery of available works.  Here is my latest effort along with some examples of fish from the Mid Century era.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

I love to look at the commercial art and graphics of the Mid Century era.  In this current age of photography and computer generated design, we forget that hand drawn art was such a part of the everyday scene.  As an artist it is disappointing that there are now so few outlets for creative painting.  I wish Mad Men had a sequel more about the art department and the art scene at that time.

Here is a link to a terrific site with some examples of album covers from the Mid Twentieth Century.  Clever design, very little photography.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

The dogs have it this week!  I started putting dogs and cats in my paintings to soften the sometimes harsh lines of Modern design.  They give a sense of real people and families living in the Space Age.  I don't do dog portraits, or any commission painting, but I get lots of requests for breeds that people are interested in seeing in the modern settings.  No better salesman on Earth than a cute pet. 

Feel free to contact me if you have a special breed that you would like to see in a painting.

Sunday, May 10, 2015


Frederick Weinberg has long been one of my favorite Mid Century artists.  His works embody the style of the era.  I'm privileged to own one of his better known pieces, "Jitterbug"  which hangs over my fireplace.  He was also a champion of mass produced art, or product art, which helped to make great design available to the average person.

His work inspired one of my own paintings,    WEINBERG OVERTURE  which is available in my Limited Edition Print collection.

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

One of my favorite episodes of Mad Men is the one where Campbell is returning a dip and chip dish he and Trudi got as a wedding gift so that he can use the refund to buy a rifle.  He has to explain "dip" to the guys in the office because thy have never heard of it.
Dip was invented in the early 1950s.  California Dip, sometimes also called Onion Soup Dip, was used in advertising by the Lipton Company, although they do not claim to have invented it.  The first Dip and Chip dish set was issued in 1953.
California dip is a two ingredient recipe, the sour cream and the onion soup mix.  Here is another two ingredient dip, a little more updated.  I got this recipe from a friend in California.

                                                  Kimchi Dip

                             1 pint jar of Kimchi
                             4 bars cream cheese
Blend the ingredient in the food processor.  Thin with milk if needed.  Serve with chips or baguet slices.