THE ARTIST / AUTHOR
Michael Griesgraber was born in St. Paul, Minnesota. Aside from his art, his career included stints as a Navy photographer, a graphic designer at the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, a BBDO ad agency account executive, and an advertising and marketing director for some of the world’s most decorated tech companies including Seagate. He holds a Master of Fine Arts degree from the University of Minnesota and a Master of Fine Arts degree from Syracuse University.
I am often asked why I paint parodies. Some people think my paintings are just copies of another artist’s work. A few people are even offended that I would deface a great painting by turning it into a parody.
Actually, there are several reasons I paint parodies. First is to study the style and composition of the art I most admire. When I replicate an iconic painting, I’m doing it to learn how to improve my skill as an artist. The challenge is to be able to capture the style and technique employed by the original artist. It’s often said, “imitation is the sincerest form of flattery,” hence by replicating the art I like I’m expressing my admiration for the art I hold in high regard. For me each parody is a tribute to an artist and his or her work. Another reason I paint parodies is to amuse myself and entertain viewers.