Transcendental by Johnny Bee Badanjek
Johnny Bee is a Detroit native. Born in Highland Park, he was attracted to the arts at a young age. “To me, melody and rhythm are akin to breathing and consuming oxygen,” says Badanjek.
Bad Conscience (Portrait of Tanya Williams) by Johnny Bee Badanjek
He originally was attracted to music, where he made quite a mark on the world of rock, but always liked the idea of being a painter. His mother worked at 6M Tech Center and the designers would give her pencils and supplies for Johnny Bee and his brother. However, for much of his life, music took first priority over art.
Baudelaire’s Melancholy Waltz by Johnny Bee Badanjek
Johnny Bee has one of the most impressive track records of any drummer. He was the original drummer for Mitch Ryder and the Detroit Wheels, recording one of the three greatest drum breaks in the history of rock, according to Rolling Stone Magazine (On "Devil With A Blue Dress").
In addition, he has toured and recorded with Edgar Winter, Alice Cooper, Dr. John, Bob Seger, Ronnie Montrose, Nils Lofgren and others, providing the backbeat for some of rock's legendary tracks. In 1972, he co-founded the Rockets.
The Neurosis of a Libertine by Johnny Bee Badanjek
Through all the musical fame, Badanjek never lost his love of painting nor his desire to pursue it seriously. “My authentic pursuit of artistic freedom brought me to drawing and painting and a deep appreciation for this encompassing art form,” he says.
His work is noted for its self-portraits, Detroit-inspired scenes, meticulous use of color, and his surrealism. His pieces are at once realistic and yet they have no shortage of imagination, as though Bee has expanded musical improv from the recording studio to the canvas.
“He’s been an exciting artist for quite some time,” says Jeremy Hansen, Gallery Director. “We are pleased to bring ‘Title Goes Here’ to the gallery.”
Persistence of Legend: I Kissed James Dean by Amy Chenier
Postmodern Study in Black and White by Amy Chenier
She was renowned world-wide for her breathtakingly realistic portrayals of athletes and historic sport moments and being one of the top female sports artists in the world. However, she has also painted images of Detroit as well as other famous figures like Freud, Elizabeth Taylor, and Janis Joplin.
Her art graces the collections of many prominent art collectors and athletes, including Sergei Federov and Martin LaPointe of the Detroit Red Wings, and Mike Illitch, owner of several Detroit professional sports teams and Little Caesar’s Corporation. Her work has also been on the cover of Beckett Magazine, one of the most prestigious sports magazines in the world.
Chenier has drifted from the world of sports to the world of philosophy to music and pop-culture. Her mission: to capture a moment in the face of a person. The agony of defeat, when a ball was missed, when a hit was made, all are captured on Chenier’s canvases.
Contrived though it may sound, both Badanjek and Chenier are inspired by what’s happening in Detroit: the growth, the gentrification, the revitalization. Mixed with their great love of the Motor City is a love of the philosophical and deconstruction. The show’s title is inspired by Dostoyevsky’s Notes from Underground. Other past masters that have contributed to the show’s inspiration include Andy Warhol, Marcel Duchamp, and Claude Monet.
For more information, call River’s Edge Gallery 734-246-9880 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org