Arguably one of the most popular contemporary artists today, Blair Thurman’s work emphasizes his broad range of media with neon being one of his main materials. Thurman was born in New Orleans and currently lives and works in New York. As an art student in the 1980s, he sought to escape prevailing theoretical concerns, resulting in a Pop-Minimalist sensibility infused with tribal patterns and the American car culture. For instance, the imagery found in Honeybadgers, on view at OKCMOA, was inspired by the design on a favorite t-shirt and is reminiscent of totem poles first created by indigenous people of the Pacific Northwest Coast of North America. However, instead of the traditional carved wooden pole, Thurman has used painted plywood and his signature colored neon lights.
Blair Thurman (American, b. 1961). Honeybadgers, 2009. Plywood, acrylic, neon, glass, wire. Lent by SPBB, LLC. © Blair Thurman. Photo by Rob McKeever. Courtesy Gagosian Gallery