Sean-Patrick M. Hillman
TO DESTINY - BY WAY OF FATE TO DEBUT AT POP
WITH LEGENDARY AMERICAN ARTIST PIERSON
Show to Benefit Animal Charity Rock & Rawhide
New York, NY (April 18, 2013) – On Thursday, April 18th, POP International Galleries will debut a new exhibition by legendary American artist, Markus Pierson, titled “TO DESTINY - By Way Of Fate.” A portion of the show’s proceeds will benefit Rock & Rawhide, a 501(c)3 dedicated to increasing the level of adoptions of dogs and cats in shelters. Mr. Pierson, who is most well-known for his paintings of anthropomorphic, Zoot suit wearing coyotes accompanied by the painter’s own humorous and deeply profound writings, hopes his show at the POP Gallery will bring attention to the Rock & Rawhide cause.
“People always ask me why so much of my art focuses on coyotes,” said Pierson. “I tell them it’s because coyotes are animals who always celebrate life. They get kicked around, but they embrace it just the same.” The same can be said for animals living in shelters. “At Rock & Rawhide, we try to increase shelter adoptions by providing the animals with toys and other related items to create a less stressful and more stimulating environment,” said charity co-founder, Sean-Patrick M. Hillman. “In turn, dogs and cats can pass their evaluations at shelters, and show more of their personality, making them more adoptable.”
After a near death experience forced him to re-evaluate his life, Markus Pierson devoted himself to a boyhood passion; the arts. Determined to become a successful artist, he took a day job as billboard painter, devoting nights to his artwork. The creation of his Coyote Series began in June of 1986 after hearing the Joni Mitchell song, “Coyote.” Inspired by the song, Markus drew the reckless, Casanova-like character in dark sunglasses that Mitchell’s song described. "I didn't think it would change my life, I just thought it would be fun to draw!" Over 25 years and hundreds of paintings later, his works continue to be in demand.
The range of Pierson’s work has evolved tremendously since his first, fateful sketch of the coyote (which was actually based on his runaway dog “Pete”). His catalogue includes not only paintings, but drawings, limited edition prints, and complex sculpture, which all incorporate original, found-objects for which Pierson’s work is so renowned and voraciously sought after. From the Americas to Australia and all over Europe, Markus has been the subject of dozens of solo shows across the world as well as two major museum shows in his home state of Missouri. Pierson and his artwork have been featured in numerous movies and television shows, as well as having been the subject of many newspaper and magazine articles. His pieces have been collected by famous celebrities, captains of industry and heads of state. “Yes, they hang on the walls of mansions and great villas around the world,” said Pierson of his work. “But what’s most important is that they hang on the walls of everyday, regular people, and like a great pet, they bring joy into their lives.”
“An important part of our mission here at POP is to participate in meaningful causes in the community,” said gallery owner, Jeff Jaffe. “One of those causes is combating the inhuman way animals are treated in shelters every day.” Pairing up Markus Pierson’s art with Rock & Rawhide was a natural choice for POP because not only is the coyote a cousin of the domesticated dog, but also because of their shared, marginalized position in our society. According to Hillman, “roughly 6 to 8 million dogs and cats are surrendered to shelters every year in the US. Hopefully, having a famous artist like Markus Pierson benefit Rock & Rawhide will help raise awareness that about half of those animals are euthanized.”
TO DESTINY - By Way Of Fate will be held at The POP Gallery’s SoHo location, 473 West Broadway, from 7pm to 9pm on Thursday, April 18th.
About POP International Galleries
POP International Galleries is a unique art gallery located on West Broadway in the heart of SoHo, in New York City. Founded in 1997 by Jeff Jaffe, POP International specializes in Pop Art, graphic art, urban art, sculpture, photography, and art that is derived from, or influenced by, popular culture. As the only street level Pop Art gallery in SoHo, with an impressive roster of highly regarded artists, both emerging and famed, Pop International Galleries is a great source for all collectors and art admirers. POP International Galleries also believes that an educational component is vital to collectors and the community at large. Events at the gallery often include guest lectures and discussions, screenings and slide shows as well as charitable tie-ins, making POP International Galleries very much a part of the community at large. For more information visit www.PopInternational.com, and follow them on Facebook and Twitter.
About Rock & Rawhide
Rock & Rawhide aims to increase adoptions and quality of life for dogs and cats in shelters, by providing distraction therapy and noise/stress reduction through the donations of toys, tough chew items, Kongs, Nylabones, bones, rawhides, blankets and more. If a dog is chewing, it's not barking! If a cat is playing, it’s not meowing! Less noise leads to less stress. In turn, dogs and cats can pass their evaluations at shelters, and show more of their personality, making them more adoptable. Rock & Rawhide collects items through regular donations, music gigs, visual art shows, culinary events, DJ events, drop box programs, and more.