BOB DYLAN – ” Retrospectrum “

Posted: August 17, 2022 in MUSIC

As one of the most influential artists of all time, Bob Dylan has sold more than 125 million records. He is now just as revered for his fine art, which offers a unique insight into the Nobel Prize laureate’s world. Collections include RetrospectrumThe Beaten PathThe Drawn Blank Series, Mondo ScriptoThe Asia Series and The Brazil Series.

Dylan dates the origins of his work as a visual artist to the early 1960s. A few drawings reached the public gaze with album covers like Music from Big Pink (1968) and Self Portrait (1970). In 1974, Dylan spent two seminal months studying art with Ashcan School tutor Norman Raeben, who philosophised the importance of ‘perceptual honesty’ – painting life as it as seen, not imagined. Dylan says of this time: “He put my mind and my hand and my eye together, in a way that allowed me to do consciously what I unconsciously felt.”

The artist’s journeys between cities and towns are personified by his Expressionist lines, which capture the instant moment of a place, person and time. Repeated motifs encourage the viewer to explore the depths of colour and the evolution of his work. His art has been likened to that of Pablo Picasso, with critics applauding the relatability of his collections. He paints mostly from life, stating: “I’m pretty much interested in people, histories, myth, and portraits; people of all stripes.”

In November 2021, the Bob Dylan: Retrospectrum exhibition opened at the Patricia & Phillip Frost Art Museum in Miami, where it ran until April 2022. Following a successful tour in Shanghai, Beijing and Shenzhen, the display spanned six decades and was the largest exhibition of Dylan’s work to ever be displayed in the United States. Featuring over 180 paintings, drawings and ironworks from throughout his artistic career, it also included Dylan’s brand-new Deep Focus series, which transforms scenes from films into cinematic paintings. 

Dylan’s contributions to worldwide culture have been recognised and honoured with many awards. These include an Academy Award for his song ‘Things Have Changed’, which featured in the 2000 film Wonder Boys, along with 12 Grammy Awards and a Special Citation Pulitzer Prize for his ‘profound impact on popular music and American culture’. Further accolades include a Kennedy Center Honor presented by former president Bill Clinton, the Presidential Medal of Freedom presented by former president Barack Obama, and the Nobel Prize in Literature. 

During the last six decades he has released more than 50 albums and written in excess of 500 songs, some of the most famous being ‘Blowin’ In The Wind’, ‘The Times They Are A-Changin and ‘Like A Rolling Stone’, which were visually reimagined for the first time in his Mondo Scripto collection. His songs have been covered more than 6,000 times by artists as diverse as Duke Ellington, Jimi Hendrix, Guns N’ Roses, Stevie Wonder, Rod Stewart, the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Bob Marley, Pearl Jam, Neil Young, Adele and U2. 

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