Ed Brodkin, in his works, loves to explore the awesome beauties of a sometimes unforgiving nature, of the passage of time and of the existential – and their effects on mankind. He is often led to “Communications”, using forms and symbols from indigenous arts to medieval manuscripts to the binary codes of cybernetics, referring to our species’ efforts to send and preserve information and knowledge – as well as telling and perpetuating untruths and superstitions. Occasionally there will be “trompe l’oeil illusions, metaphors for all the illusions we live with.
He takes great pleasure in using a variety of materials: acrylics enamels, glazes, varnishes, collages, printed or woven fabrics on varied grounds including canvas, burlap, fiberboard and pressed wood, sometimes combined. Occasionally non-rectangular shapes are used possibly even perforated. All the above allow him the pleasure of always experimenting, never becoming formulaic and never settling on a “signature” style.
Mr. Brodkin studied at the Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art (BFA) and has exhibited in Germany, Spain, Korea and in many sites in the U.S. including Soho and Chelsea in New York City as well as in Washington, D.C. and Philadelphia. He has travelled widely around the world to artist’s studios, galleries and museums, from the Edvard Munch Museum in Oslo to Cezanne’s studio in Aix-en-Provence, from Barbara Hepworth’s studio in St. Ives to the Hermitage in St. Petersburg, from the Louvre in Paris to the Acropolis Museum in Athens, from an artist’s studio in Kunming to Australia’s National Gallery of Victoria, from the Atheneum in Helsinki to the Uffizi in Florence and many, many more.
An author and reviewer once wrote: “The visual pleasures are many for Mr. Brodkin is an artist who absolutely revels in his materials. He creates mixed media paintings that are at once thoughtful and tactile, visually powerful and rich in meaning. He is a visionary with a perpetual twinkle in his eye.”