Wednesday, March 11, 2015

The Artwork Of John Piacquadio

I follow quite a few artists through online and I really dig the work of John Piacquadio of The Twin Cities Urban Fly.
In this post, John provides some background on where his artwork is inspired from along with a few favorite originals that he was gracious to share. 

John wrote...  "I feel this body of work is a natural culmination of many aspects of myself. Some background, I grew up in The Bronx when the only time I'd fish would be once or twice a year with my father when we'd go visit Uncle Marvin on the Jersey Shore. We'd fish for bluefish and shark. These experiences have quite an impact on a 5 year old, and I would spend the rest of the year fantasizing about fish and fishing. I had the opportunity to start fishing more consistently when we moved to Connecticut when I was 12. I picked up a fly rod somewhere along the way, and taught myself how to use it by reading books. 

In college, I pursued one of my passions, art, at Connecticut College where I would spend my time sneaking into the Arboretum at night to fish the pond the biology department used for research. I was chased out by security more than once. I also spent my time drinking and doing drugs.

I barely graduated due to my chemical hobbies and mental health issues, and after a stint at a mental institution and the discovery of AA, I eventually embraced sobriety. Meditation was something else I learned to help cope with depression and anxiety along the way. 

Over the years, I came to realize that the same state of being I felt in meditation was pretty much how I felt when I was tying flies. It's pretty difficult to focus on anything other than the present when tying a size 18 anything!

I realized that the focus utilized on fly tying had made me intimately aware of every aspect of the fly, and I wondered if I could recreate this on paper without sketching first. Rather, I would rely solely on the knowledge imbued from repeated tying of a pattern. These ink drawing/paintings are produced with minimal brush strokes and minimal thinking, in order to challenge myself to move the process away from technique and mental processes, to a process of intuition, heart, and spirit.

Today, i am a drug counselor working with addicts who have traumatic brain injuries. I tie flies with clients because it works wonders with brain injuries and the therapeutic value is something all fly tiers are familiar. I volunteer with Project Healing Waters and fish as much as I can."

To see more of John's work, please visit his website and follow along with the latest studio news on The Twin Cities Urban Fly Facebook and Instagram pages.


Custom cabin retreats said...

Sweet art!!! I'd like to commission a wooly bugger.

Middlemac said...

Beautiful work. My favorite is actually that sketchy bad boy at the top if your post. Thx CM.

Cameron Mortenson said... John through his website. I'm sure that that is possible. of my favorites as well.