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chopping block: Joe sorren

One of the best surprises at Baby Tattooville this year was not the bag full of cool art collectables or watching the art jam take on a life of its own, don't get me wrong, those were high points of the weekend!  But...the most unexpected, wonderful piece was getting a chance to sit down with the one and only Joe Sorren only to find out he is more personable and genuine then I could have ever imagined.  He felt more like a long lost friend then an artist we have been collecting for over 10 years.  In fact he was the first art print we bought and still love today.  And now to  be releasing a series of Sorren prints on wood!  It's an honor all its own.  If you have not heard of Sorren or have been wondering what he has been up to the last few years, read on!

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POW: When did your formal artistic career begin? Did you always know you wanted to be an artist?

Joe: I couldn't help but draw, all day in class, after school. Didn't really consider a career until college. Felt more like a pipe dream than a career. Still does. I guess that's part of the appeal.

Screen shot 2014-11-03 at 10.30.45 AMBecause of Toast by Joe Sorren

POW: We are beyond excited to be working with you on the release of your new piece, “Coronation” and the mini-portfolio collection of four classic prints which include, Because of Toast, If In This Fire, The Portrait of Roger Meanie, and The Mushroom Hunter. From so many amazing art pieces to choose from, how did you narrow it down to those four?

Joe: Thanks guys, I am beyond stoked to be working with you all as well! After we discussed the possibility of a recreated mini-portfolio, I started looking through my past pieces. I wanted to show 4 pieces that felt like they both belong together, but where each had its own unique voice within the collection, you know?

Screen shot 2014-11-03 at 10.31.57 AMCoronation by Joe Sorren

POW: I was looking through your Facebook the other day and stumbled upon an animated video made by your son of George Harrison’s “What is Life”.  I found the video incredibly beautiful.  How does it feel to see your son follow in your foot steps of artistic expression?  Does your son share the same passion to create art, even if in his own medium, as you do?

Joe: He is definitely following his own footsteps. I am constantly bowled over by the simplicity and grace he naturally displays in his work as well as his life. Inspiring.

POW: It was beyond an honor to meet you in person at Baby Tattooville earlier this month where you were joined alongside some of our favorite artists, including Jeff Soto, Bob Dobb, Johnny "KMNDZ" Rodriguez and Tara McPherson.  It was quite a memorable experience in so many different ways.  It will probably be hard to pick one, but did you have a favorite moment from that weekend?

Joe: I happened to wake up at around 5 am or so on the first morning and was curious if anyone was painting on the shared piece. Being that the piece was not so large, and there were to be 14 artists contributing, I thought it might be my best chance to work on it a bit. So I went down there and only found KMNDZ working on it. I jumped in and we worked together a bit, followed shortly by Brom. Having the chance to work with those amazing painters in the quiet of morning was a special treat to be sure.

Screen shot 2014-11-03 at 10.36.07 AMThe Mushroom Hunter by Joe Sorren

POW: One thing I love about your art is the fact that it is almost impossible to find any harsh lines in your work. Your brush strokes make everything seem so light, almost airy. With that being said, what are some of your biggest artistic inspirations? Are there any artists from both past and present that you admire?

Joe: Sure! I love the usual gang of idiots over at Mad Magazine. Growing up staring at Al Jaffee's line work, Don Martin's incredible characters and sick sense of humor. Sergio...

Within the art world, I love Twombly; the manic raw nature in his work. The impressionists are a little like Dylan to me. I keep rediscovering them and learning new things from them over the years. I went through a Dutch period not long ago, who doesn't I guess. Painting has so much more to express, and so many incredible ways in which to express, it is an endless fascination for me.

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For more information on Joe Sorren, please visit:  www.joesorrenlivestream.com/