20×16 inches Oil Stick and Acrylic on Canvas 2019
Brian Gormley knew the urban poet and wall writer Jean-Michel Basquiat well and was influenced by him to create graffiti art. After working in the streets of New York City for several years in the 1980s, Gormley began creating graffiti-influenced studio art that reflects additional influences of abstract expressionism. Gormley covers his canvas with chunks of vibrant color, or he paints the canvas black and then layers dozens of his own screen or block printed designs over them. An accomplished printmaker, in the early ’90s he used acrylic paint to carefully prepare a ground upon which he layered silk-screened imagery derived from his doodles. The frenzied abstractions he produced, rich and dense with both pattern and color, mimicked the energy of a brashly graffitied wall.