"Happy Little Trees" Contemporary artists respond to the legacy of television painter Bob Ross. (Cover art by Tom Bagshaw)
I had the idea of doing a tribute show to the legacy of television painter Bob Ross for a couple of years. Talking to the good people at Screaming Sky Gallery in Portland Oregon, things worked out and here it is! For many kids growing up in the 1980s and 90s who had access to PBS (Public Broadcasting TV station), Bob Ross’s weekly Joy of Painting show was one of the earliest exposure to seeing someone actually paint. Now artists of that generation are grown up and producing their own art.
I invited some of these amazingly talented people to respond to their memories of Bob Ross in their own style, whether it’s illustrative, traditional, graphic, urban, modern, or beyond, and asked them to take the idea where every it leads. And it’s lead them to some very interesting places.
If you can make it to Portland please join us Sept 27th at Screaming Sky Gallery
1416 NE Alberta Street Portland, OR 97211
Or catch the show on the gallery site at
Contributing artists include:
Bryan A. Collins
Neil M. Perry
Phresha Le Vandalé
Sharks in the dunk tank
Vipers in the garden
Air’s choked to death with robotics: dragonflies
And your sound.
Strained from practicing
By cover of night
And your quieting sheets,
You move tight.
Within the system
Of your parents,
And your god.
They all say you can’t play
And try as you might, you can’t care
About them more than this,
Your true gospel.
Your real religion.
You felt it in you for years
This pull towards what was denied you.
When you were eight, you were grounded for humming.
Just a little ditty,
But the scare it gave your mother nearly killed her.
By nine, you’d progressed to singing.
You never sounded good because there was no one left to teach you.
When you turned ten, you learned to hide your differences.
The night after your sixteenth birthday, you found them.
Cached away beneath the city
The last of the musicians.
They gave you a violin.
You knew all along you’d burn for this.
It didn’t matter.
You learned. And now,
You tell your story between the chords.
The dragonflies land to listen.
Just got into Robot Koch’s work. It’s pretty much the kind of music I’d love to make. So inspired.
Source: SoundCloud / Robot Koch