May 22, 2016

It's Naive

Naïve by the Bay.

Any way you look at it, this camper is different.  Did the owner start out to make a work of art?  Was he just expressing an opinion when he stuck the first plastic flower or figure on the metal? 

Wikipedia tells us that Naïve art is any form of visual art that is created by a person who lacks the formal education and training that a professional artist undergoes (in anatomy, art history, technique, perspective, ways of seeing, etc.). Unlike folk art, naïve art does not necessarily evidence a distinct cultural context or tradition.

Here in my city, we have several of these moving pieces of Naïve Art.  We also have Salvation Mountain…a unique work of art painted on sand, straw, adobe, and lead free paint.  The artist, Leonard Knight, died in 2014, and volunteers are now attempting to keep his vision stabile in a harsh environment.

Photo: Captain Poolie used without permission.

Up in LA, the Watts Towers were built by Simon Rodia.  Cement, broken crockery, rebar and bottles all came together to create towers that lightly touch the sky.  When I first saw them they had been condemned, were crumbling, and there was a world wide fight to preserve them.  In 1990, they were designated a National Historical Monument, and Mr. Rodia would be content. 

Posted in LA History.

When several artists first saw social artist Keith Haring’s work, we thought it a joke.  Anyone could do that we told ourselves.  But anyone couldn’t.  Most of us lack the imagination, the passion, and the energy to create such a huge body of work in a new language.  Today, most of us see ourselves as fools, and we really enjoy Harings art.  One of his mural’s is being restored in Paris now, and I have been following its progress with a smile on my face.

Perhaps that’s what naïve art is….a smile on our faces.

Keith Haring, Pictify.


  • Himself:  TV, Gaming, relaxing, haircut, lunch nap, more of the same, then a suit and meeting.
  • Herself:  Ditto, and it is National Maritime Day.
  • Reading:  China Bales in a nunnery.
  • Gratitudes:  For a glorious day.


    1. This is not the same as folk art. I like your definition of this kind of work. Do you like Dubuffet? I visited the Art Brut Museum in Lausanne a while ago, where there was a lot of this sort of thing, also called "outsider art."

    2. I've seen that RV before in San Diego...there's quite a few similar vehicles up here in LA LA land as well, I posted pictures of one on my facebook a few weeks ago. FInally made it to the Watts Towers for the drum festival many years back, need to go again. The metro stops right by there.

    3. Good assessment of naive art. I agree!

    4. Love the camper van. There used to be more of them around here. Not so much now. For some reason it reminds me of Mexico.

    5. I recall seeing PBS Huell Howser TV show features on these. Interesting art categories new to me.

      My mother was once told the rugs she made were considered primitive art. She used some quilting concepts, drew geometric patterns and hooked rugs with only select fabrics. Her vision no longer allowed her to use traditional quilting designs and she needed something to keep her hands busy so she could stay awake to listen to Talking Books (on record. then.)'. An overflowing number of rugs resulted in her thinning them out by selling them. The three figure price others paid in Scottsdale, Az, here & other shops amazed her.

    6. I am not a fan of naive art. It makes me nervous and reminds me of tics and quirks of the restless mind. It is like an acid trip without the flow, although I have never dropped acid. But I also have a problem with most contemporary or abstract art. Oddly I do like Rothko.

    7. Field trip to Salvation Mountain in the fall! Once the weather cools!

    8. Yes, Sunday days are free. :)

    9. My kind of naive art consists of those cottage gardens I have seen. Otherwise, it's "emperors new clothes" all over again.

    10. Keith Haring was one of my daughter's favorite artists. The Watts Tower reminds me of the Sagrada Familia in Barcelona.


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