Support This Blog

Screenshot of the "Art For A Change" page on Patreon.

Click image to visit the "Art For A Change" page on Patreon

If you appreciate my paintings, drawings, prints, and writings, please visit my Patreon page where you can support my creations with a pledge of $1 or more.

www.patreon.com/markvallen

Patreon is a subscription-based funding site for artists and creative individuals. Think of it as an ongoing artist grant, not one bankrolled by corporate power, an elite art institution, or a state bureaucracy, but one funded directly by the people of the world! What could be more democratic?

Your contribution to Art For A Change on Patreon will help assure that an independent, humanist, and challenging social realist art can survive in today’s hyper-commercial art world.

At work on paintings in progress, 2008. Photo by Jeannine Thorpe.

At work on paintings in progress, 2008. Photo by Jeannine Thorpe.

I am a working professional artist who resides in Los Angeles, California, but this web log is not about the art scene in my city, nor does it specifically focus on my own works. My writings on art exhibits, theory, philosophy, history, news, other artists, and a myriad of topics related to aesthetics, spotlight the role art and culture plays in shaping society.

What differentiates my web log from other sites dealing with art is not just the emphasis I place upon social engagement and activism, but the fact that I am a painter who writes about and advocates a new social realism for the 21st century. This could not be otherwise, since I am an artist deeply influenced by the likes of Goya, the German Expressionists, the Mexican Muralists, and the American social realist school of the 1930s and 1940s.

Those who believe that “drawing and painting are dead” are not likely to find much on this web log that will be reassuring to them. I extol and seek to create artworks that communicate directly with large audiences in a serious and insightful manner. I am unabashedly in favor of craft, skill, draftsmanship, beauty, and profound narrative in art; highly favoring works that convey humanist concerns and, dare I say – a sense of the spiritual (for lack of a better word).

Overall my writings are a critique regarding the international crisis now facing the contemporary art world; a predicament rooted in the disintegration and collapse of the accepted socio-economic-political norms of the period. I am unapologetically in opposition to the vacuity, banality, and dominance of postmodernist art, which I view as elitist, inaccessible, and totally compromised by cynicism and rampant commercialism.

That being said, I hope that my artworks and writings will in some small way serve as a contribution to the collective thought and action necessary to bring about a new socially conscious school of art for our time. If it can be said that this web log has a mission, it is to refresh and reinvigorate the function of the artist as a visionary citizen of the world.

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