"A journey for the eyes and mind." That is how Oklahoma native, Mark Yearwood hopes viewers perceive his structural acrylic paintings.
How this descendent of red-dirt farmers has moved from graphic design to a quickly rising fine artist makes an interesting tale.
Yearwood worked for over 27 years in graphic design, along the way doing a few art projects, three-dimensional pieces, from his own shop materials. He has always loved to work with his hands, having started helping on his Grandfather's farm when he was only ten years old. Now at 49, he is taking the principles of his hands-on design work—layout, contrast, color and design balance—and applying them to fine art. In the last five years he has been doing a re-design on himself, his life, and professional direction.
Yearwood’s fine art is all about line and form, a little geometry, architectural aspects, and organic design. He has been influenced along the way by Native American art and culture, the work of Frank Lloyd Wright, and the quality of the work of contemporary Santa Fe artists. Previously the artist always had to suit his sign and graphic design customers and abide by the images they had in mind. Now he wants to work for himself, following his own inspiration in its purest form. What is inside is being released in the abstract form; it is not representational, allowing for a co-creation of meaning between artist and viewer. His goals: to make better and better art, to explore, to evolve, not to be stale nor easily pigeonholed. Yearwood is currently known for the interesting texture of his work, one piece even containing parts of a salvaged Cello.
When asked if he would move eventually toward more representational work, Yearwood responded,” I have thought about adding a figure or a face to the abstract projects, but I will never be a hard realist. Some of my pieces do have a hint of a landscape.” He added,” My desire, though, is to stimulate art viewers to explore their own interpretation of my work.” He mused,” When they connect with the art, I’ve succeeded. This is a process balanced between the artist’s creative desire and the interpretive acts of viewers. Art is ultimately about that human connection.”
Yearwood creates in his studio located one hour West of Oklahoma City, OK
I grew up in rural Oklahoma working early on my Grandfather's farm. Good old fashioned gritty, hard work. Later, I worked with my Dad in his custom auto shop where I eventually learned to pinstripe and letter cars. There was more gritty, hard work involved there as well! I went on to develop a graphic arts career which spanned over 25 years with appearances in major industry publications and awards, all the while experimenting with various art projects. On a whim of exploration, I purchased some palette knives, paints, and canvases and went after some abstract ideas. Immediately, I became amazed at how great it felt to express my own original thoughts to substrate. You could say I was liberated at that moment. My textural work reflects the "grittiness" of working in nature and the structural elements come into play from my design background. As for color? Well, I just paint what I feel inside.
Abstract possibilities are endless and after each mark is made on the substrate, I have to make a decision of what comes next. In realism, you know where the painting will (or should) end up. This is the part of my work that is the most thrilling to me. "What happens next?" I find it amazing how a painting seems to push me along in the process.
To contact Mark Yearwood about available works or commissions, use the form on the contact page or call the studio at 580-772-1158