Gregory Blackstock

American , 1946 -

Seattle  artist  Gregory  Blackstock  (American  b.  1946)  grew  up  in  an  era  where  the  term autism  was  scarcely  known.  He  spent  5  years  in  institutional  schools  far  from  family,  and worked  menial  jobs  from  his  late  teens  until  his  final  retirement  in  2001.  Although  he  has shown  to  have  multiple  savant  skills,  because  of  his  autism,  Blackstock  can  be  baffled by  the  emotions  and  conversation  of  others  and  he  is  unnerved  by  the  relentless changes  and  challenges  of  modern  life.  Rules  and  facts  are  comforting,  so  with  his drawings,  he  fills  his  world  with  things  which  can  be  identified,  ordered,  and  arranged  - be  they  bugs,  birds,  vehicles  or  landmarks.  Drawing  regularly  only  since  his  early  40s, he  immediately  began  to  catalog  the  world.  Once  he  has  committed  a  grouping  to paper,  he  is  satisfied  that  it  will  remain  fixed  in  a  dependable  taxonomy. Although  the  artist  has  always  drawn  for  his  personal  enjoyment  and  education,  this very  socially  challenged  man  clearly  uses  this  medium  as  an  important  communication tool  with  which  to  draw  others  into  his  world.  He  loves  talking  about  his  drawings  to whomever  will  listen,  and  often  adds  sound  effects  (race  boat  engines),  mimes irritations  (mosquitos)  or  recounts  bits  of  his  own  history,  which  are  imbedded  in  or associated  with  many  of  his  drawings  (Petosa  accordions.)  Interestingly,  the  factual detail  of  the  subjects  and  their  conversational  utility  are  much  more  important  to Blackstock  than  the  physical  medium,  which  he  treats  with  cavalier  disregard. He  draws  with  innate  precision  and,  since  2004,  a  vivid  use  of  color.  Even  the  seemingly simple  repetitive  themed  works  marked  solely  by  color  variation  exhibit  advanced techniques  of  shading  and  placement.  Referencing  images  culled  from  books,  photos, and  his  own  memory,  Blackstock  learns  detailed  information  about  each  of  his  subjects, memorizing  an  astonishing  range  of  geographical,  anecdotal,  and  scientific  information which  he  will  never  forget. It  is  useful  for  the  viewer  to  understand  that  not  only  is  this  artist  self  taught,  but because  each  new  drawing  involves  a  different  subject,  Blackstock  is  simultaneously teaching  himself  how  to  draw  that  plane,  bird,  plant  or  heinous  bug  as  he  is  rendering  it on  the  final  piece. In  addition  to  his  art,  Blackstock  often  revisits  music  from  his  childhood,  making  handdrawn,  note-perfect,  sheet  music  from  tunes  he  heard  at  the  roller  rink  decades  ago. When  he  is  not  drawing  or  working  on  his  sheet  music  or  his  beloved  photo  albums,  he enjoys  making  lists  of  words,  using  a  battered  Thesaurus  as  his  guide.  As  nuance  and verbal  weight  can  be  unfathomable  to  him,  he  spends  hours  reproducing  and augmenting  synonyms  and  antonyms,  in  an  attempt  to  crack  the  communication  ‘code’. His  treasure  trove  of  rolled  up  drawings  were  ‘discovered’  in  2004  and  following  his  first solo  art  show  at  age  fifty-eight,  Blackstock’s  drawings  have  captivated  art  lovers worldwide.  His  work  has  been  shown  in  Geneva,  San  Francisco,  New  York,  Vienna, Philadelphia,  Miami,  and  Seattle.  The  prestigious  Collection  de  l’Art  Brut  in  Lausanne, Switzerland,  holds  an  impressive  assortment  of  the  artist’s  work.  Blackstock  is represented  by  Greg  Kucera  Gallery  in  Seattle,  Washington.Born in Seattle, WA, in 1946; lives and works in Seattle
Artworks
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THESAURUS #7 (RESENT) from THE INCOMPLETE HISTORICAL WORLD, PART I

2020

Greg Kucera Gallery

Under $2,200

THE "SUPER-RED-HOT" WORLD PEPPERS from THE INCOMPLETE HISTORICAL WORLD, PART I

2020

Greg Kucera Gallery

Under $2,200

THE SHOES from THE INCOMPLETE HISTORICAL WORLD, PART I

2020

Greg Kucera Gallery

Under $2,200

THE PIRANHAS from THE INCOMPLETE HISTORICAL WORLD, PART I

2020

Greg Kucera Gallery

Under $2,200

THE MAJOR WORLD TROUBLEMAKER BEETLES from THE INCOMPLETE HISTORICAL WORLD, PART I

2020

Greg Kucera Gallery

Under $2,200

THE LILIES from THE INCOMPLETE HISTORICAL WORLD, PART I

2020

Greg Kucera Gallery

Under $2,200

THE HISTORIC WORLD STRONGHOLDS from THE INCOMPLETE HISTORICAL WORLD, PART I

2020

Greg Kucera Gallery

Under $2,200

THE GREAT WORLD PENGUINS from THE INCOMPLETE HISTORICAL WORLD, PART I

2020

Greg Kucera Gallery

Under $2,200

THE GREAT WORLD DRONGOS from THE INCOMPLETE HISTORICAL WORLD, PART I

2020

Greg Kucera Gallery

Under $2,200

THE GREAT WORLD CROWS from THE INCOMPLETE HISTORICAL WORLD, PART I

2020

Greg Kucera Gallery

Under $2,200

THE GREAT AMERICAN ART MUSEUMS from THE INCOMPLETE HISTORICAL WORLD, PART I

2020

Greg Kucera Gallery

Under $2,200

THE CARROTS from THE INCOMPLETE HISTORICAL WORLD, PART I, 2020

2020

Greg Kucera Gallery

Under $2,200

THE CARNIVOROUS PLANTS from THE INCOMPLETE HISTORICAL WORLD, PART I, 2020

2020

Greg Kucera Gallery

Under $2,200

THE BIRDWING BUTTERFLIES from THE INCOMPLETE HISTORICAL WORLD, PART I, 2020

2020

Greg Kucera Gallery

Under $2,200

THE AUTOMOBILE CLASSICS - COLOR from THE INCOMPLETE HISTORICAL WORLD, PART I, 2020

2020

Greg Kucera Gallery

Under $2,200

THE ART SUPPLIES from THE INCOMPLETE HISTORICAL WORLD, PART I, 2020

2020

Greg Kucera Gallery

Under $2,200