Cafe Verite Ballard | Art Show Explanation

(EMPIRE, acrylic on canvas, 36" by 36", $450)

I currently have a show up at the Cafe Verite/Cupcake Royale in Ballard, WA. I have been working hard over the last 6 weeks… putting in some substantial time to make some good studio work. Most of what I create is in front of an audience and takes about an hour… that’s what I’m remembered for. But what I think artists are known for is their studio pieces, their portfolio.  So it’s important for me to take some time out every year to work on a series of paintings based on whatever I’m thinking about.  That’s what this show is.

Above is EMPIRE. This was the most recently finished painting I have done.  I needed to something funny as I was creating some heavy work and this is what came up.  Even though it’s to get a laugh, I do think it has some interesting comments on using power and military force to make people adhere to a set of beliefs.  If you put in a stormtrooper to a normal saint painting, it becomes funny, yes, but it can also stir thoughts about what are the belief agendas we promote through military pressure… even if it is in the name of God.  Remember, don’t think too much about it.  It’s supposed to be fun.


(FORGIVE THY BROTHER, acrylic on canvas, 48"x48", $675)

These next four paintings are based off  thoughts, experiences, or events that pertain to humanity’s interaction with God.

Forgive Thy Brother is about just that…. forgiveness.  Jesus says that we are to forgive or neighbor/brother just as our Heavenly Father forgives us… and if we cannot do that that He is reluctant to forgive us.  How do we do this when we can be so tragically hurt by someone else?  And it seems that the way to reconciliation with God is through reconciliation with each other.  Why is this?  Why is God so interested in us learning to forgive one another? Why can’t our hurts and grudges be justified in His eyes?  This was a very heavy painting to live with…..

(CONVERSATIONS, acrylic on canvas, 48"x48", $675)

CONVERSATIONS comes from my experiences being a surfer up here in the northwest.  The coast is a magical place and there is something about leaving the city, being out on the water that lends to it feeling holy.  Except for the dickheads who yell at you for being to close to them in the line-up. (apparently 4 people in the water is too much.) I feel like I’ve learned a lot about God from the ocean.  One is the ocean demands my respect.  It’s big. Beautiful. It has it’s own rhythm and character. Entering into that can be some of the most joyous experiences imaginable.  But the ocean can kill me, and I must play on it’s terms.  

(THE DEALING WITH DEAD FAITH, acrylic on canvas, 48"x48", $675)

This painting came out of a few conversations I’ve had with friends who used to have beliefs in a certain faith, but then, mostly after they graduated college, no longer believed in what they had.  Why is this?  I have my own thoughts about this and I would gladly share them with you if you like. But this painting is more about that place of coming to that understanding.  To holding the “spirit” of your belief and realizing that it’s dead.  

(THE HEAVENS AND ME, acrylic on canvas, 36"x36", $450)

This painting has a lot in it. From memories of living in Minnesota watching the geese migrate to what is that distant between the earth and the sky and where is God in all that.  Do what you will with it.


(KINGDOM COME, acrylic on canvas, 20"x30", $350)

This image has come up in some way shape or form a few times and I think it’s very strong.  So I decided to make a more iconic version of it using gold in the painting and aging it to look like an old relic of cultures past.


(YOU ARE STILL BEAUTIFUL, acrylic on wood, 36"x48", $650)

YOU ARE STILL BEAUTIFUL and FOR THE RAPED IN CONGO are both responses to a 60 minutes article I saw about the unprecedented amount of rapes that are occurring in Congo.  Rapes from 3 year olds to 80 year olds… it’s happening all the time and starting to become a normal experience in this conflict ridden society.  It’s a completely overwhelming tragedy and I’m glad for the 60 minutes article…. but what do I do with that? I have no army. I”m not a superhero. I don’t have billions.  I feel helpless to do anything about it.  And in fact, I probably can’t.  But I can paint… and I can grieve. So that’s what I did in these paintings. The woman above was raped and brutally traumatized.  The girl below is ten yrs old and was raped twice.  Both were victims of horrible events. Both had something taken away.  I wanted to let them know they are beautiful…. and what they have can never be taken away.  I wanted to give them the beauty they deserve.  I used Gustave Klimt as my muse for these two paintings.

(FOR THE RAPED IN CONGO, acrylic on wood, 36"x48", $650)

and last but not least….

(SEATTLE SKYLINE BLUE, acrylic on wood, 36"x48", $750)

For all you looking for the perfect addition to your living room collection…. here it is! This is a painting of the Seattle skyline from West Seattle.


So stop on by the Ballard Cafe Verite sometime during the month of July and see what it looks like in person.  In fact, on Saturday, June 13th, I’ll be hanging around the shop during the Ballard ArtWalk to shake hands, answer questions, and mostly look out of place if you want to make an event of it.

And… if you are interested in purchasing any of these paintings, feel free to email me at





About scotterickson

curator of awesomeness
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