Saturday, July 03, 2010

Michael the Archangel

Some of you are aware that I have been working on a St. Michael piece.  This isn't the first time I've approached this subject.  At least the third time.  Two other versions are in Dusty Diablos.
Here's one:
and here is the second one in the book:

Every since I can remember I have been fascinated with the Archangel Michael.  Sure it could be because I am his namesake.  I actually think that it is because he is often seen fighting demons.   Typically He is seen standing on top of the devil.  
Like here:
This is a classic version by Raphael.

Here's another one by Raphael...
What's not to love about the snake/dog/bird/goat devil....pretty trippy

This one is from a church in Germany
...if David Bowie were an angel.  

This is by Bernadino Zenali
Michael is a pretty cool customer in this one...look Mom, I can squash a devil with one foot.

Here's a nifty one by Perdro Garcia de Benabarre.
I love Michael's wings.

This version is from Poland.
Everybody's going surfing...

Now...I eluded to the creation of a new St. Michael.  Well it is done and it all started from a sketch I did:
From that came this:
It's about 3 feet x 2 feet
the area with the large hand opens up...Hard to tell from this photo but that eye is inset and behind a layer of mica.
You may have noticed that my version doesn't have the devil under foot.   I tried that and it didn't look so hot.  I decided to make it so that it seemed more difficult for Michael.  In some of the other versions.  It's as if Michael was having an espresso and squashed a devil or two as his sipped his cafe.  By putting the devil on the same visual plane as Michael it seemed to me that I was showing more of the heat of the battle and not the outcome. 
  Speaking of battles..this piece had been giving me grief for some time and  I've been battling it for months. This sucker was a struggle.   It felt like I was battling demons. 
But at long last I prevailed...I raise a glass of Scotch to its completion.


Elderberrystudio said...

I really love how your Archangel Michael pieces evolved! I'm always intrigued by the artistic process - especially to see how others develop and create their work.

I'm an Archangel fan - I am a 'lapsed' Orthodox Christian, so I've seen some gorgeous icons of all of the Archangels. I have an encaustic of Gabriel that a friend painted, and she embedded a milagro in the wax.

Kade said...

Michael has always been one of my favorites. I can't say enough how much I love your work, and this piece is just so cool too. Wish I could afford to take that trip to Mexico. Maybe you will get down to nice and humid south Florida and do some sort of workshop sometime. Really am enjoying Dusty Diablos. :)

Ann Renee Lighter said...

Thanks for sharing your new work and the collection of Michael images. I especially love the format you have chosen for your Michael. As always, you continue to amaze and inspire.

Jo Archer said...

Michael with a deep sea diver's helmet on makes me smile. Superb as always.

Vickie said...

This is my favorite piece to date...and, yes, St. Michael and the devil should def be on a more equal playing ground. Good & evil usually are. Loooove this one! See, a bit of struggle is a good thing. Thanks for all the lovely pics. You inspire ;)

L said...

i knew you'd find a use for the fire alarm sooner or later!
Linda E

Maria Ontiveros said...

Love the piece! The Raphael was one of my favorite things in the entire louvre.
Maria o

Maria Ontiveros said...

Love the piece! The Raphael was one of my favorite things in the entire louvre.
Maria o

Beatnheart said...

fab pieces...Love the German one...Man those people from the olden days sure knew how to make art.

Angie Platten said...

OK, your assessment and critique of the artworks gave me my morning giggle.

And I have to say, I think this piece is my favorite that you have ever done. I can see careful thought into each element. You did an amazing job on the piece. And boy, that sucker is big Michael! Guess that means you won't have it with you at AU so I could really look and ponder, huh? Not to mention that the size would put it quite out of my price range. Major bummer cuz I'd be over the moon to own this piece! It really speaks to me. LOVE it!

See ya' next month! (And get this, I'm moving 3 days before AU starts! Talk about going into crazy!)

Penny A said...

love, Love, LOVE the latest one :-) *all of your work is spectacular, tho'!* Seeing the sketch that began the concept is a cool bonus, too! Sounds as if that Scotch was well-earned ;-)

Anthroid_X said...

Hello Michael

I know i don't sign in to blogger much but each time i do i come to the realization that we must somehow be long-lost twins. I too have had a fascination with "Michael slays the Devil" imagery since i was a child. And then there are the 8437598237 other things that we seem to have in common. Like our love for Tom Waits. And being junk junkies :)

The piece came out wonderful. I just love it!

Hugs to you

Deryn Mentock said...

Here's to Michaels fighting the good fight. What would this piece be without the struggle. That energy makes it so much more interesting!

Anonymous said...

awesome piece!



Candace said...

Just saw a couple of movies dealing with Michael and His demons. I enjoy this work so much, and really think that your view of it being a real fight is more truthsome. We don't like to think so perhaps, but evil puts up a struggle... like you mentioned, now, with my _own_ work. whew.

Looking forward to more of this evolution here.

Christine Edwards said...

This is truly amazing! I'm so glad to see that your Michael is not pondering the state of his manicure in your interpretation. Really quite a fantastic piece.

Fran aka Redondowriter said...

I adore your work, Michael, and bought both of your books to autograph while I'm taking your classes this week at Idyllwild Arts. See you soon.

spindelmaker said...

The fighting Michael is a wonderful piece! I love all the details.
Thought I´d let you know I just posted about an old organ-stool that I´ve "deMenged" :-) It´s not as detailed as your arch-angel, but I really enjoyed learning your painting-techniques at the Artfest workshop.

MyBlueDog said...

Michael, F***ing Awesome..!!!

Wayne Chisnall said...

Lovin your work matey.
I'm also an assemblage artist with a passion for all things rusty.
If you ever get a spare minute please feel free to check out some of my work. Here's a link to a sculpture I made that incorporates thousands of rusty screws, collected from all round the world -

Angie Platten said...

Hey Michael, great to see you at AU again this year. This is the piece I told you that I really love. I'd love a print of your sketch of this one... and wow, how I'd love to see the finished piece in real life! Amazing detail... and I see some changes in your work a bit. Seems a little more processed out and not quite strictly intuitive. make sense? Anyway, love the symbolism of this piece. You capture a lot of emotion in the piece. Remember what I said about sketch prints! Hope to see some up for sale!