DISPATCH  June 16, 2011 (Thursday; 8:26 a.m.)

East Hampton, NY

"Lunch Money" by Randall Rosenthal.

Randall Rosenthal has an unusual take on art—he creates sculpture so real that people stare in disbelief. With the staring comes the realization that it's art that's keeping them there.

Last month, his realistic-looking sculptures took the East Hampton artist to Japan. Well, kinda of.

A camera crew from Fuji Television descended upon the sculptor’s studio to compare and contrast a real box of money vs. Rosenthal’s carved wooden box of money.

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Artist Randall Rosenthal being interviewed by Fuji Television. Courtesy of Randall Rosenthal.

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The station compared an actual box of American dollars in a cardboard box (right) with a sculpture carved by Rosenthal (left).

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The crew also filmed footage of American bills sitting atop a Rosenthal sculpture. A brisk wind (generated by fans and an air gun) blew the money away revealing a sculpture of a white envelope with bills spilling from its opening.

The program should be wacky and weird fun for Japanese television watchers. The segment airs on June 17 at 7 p.m. (local time in Japan).

"Archie" by Randall Rosenthal.

This is the third time Rosenthal's been approached to have his artwork featured on a Japanese television program, he said. The timing seemed right so he went for it.

Rosenthal’s sculpture depicts ordinary objects with origins from wood. These include newspapers, notebooks, books, carving boards, baseball cards, comic books and more.

All are carved from one block of wood and then painted.

The wood grain is visible and is an important part of the artwork, Rosenthal said.

"Cutting Board" by Randall Rosenthal.

Rosenthal’s art making is reductionary. He lets the wood lead the artwork’s form and subject. The goal is to make artworks “you can’t NOT look at it,” said Rosenthal.

Here’s a link to a story on his work published in Long Island Pulse in March 2011:

http://www.lipulse.com/art-music/article/wood-blocks-carved-into-art

(Yes, it was written by me)

"Card Box" by Randall Rosenthal.

A recent career highlight includes having a sculpture given to President Barack Obama by the figurative artist Eric Fischl, who owned the work. The sculpture featured a portrait of Obama on a yellow pad.

Afterwards, Rosenthal made another piece for Fischl to replace the work purchased at a charity auction. The sculpture also has a portrait of Obama.

This time, the portrait is "taped" onto the yellow pad instead of painted directly upon it.

BASIC FACTS: Artwork by Randall Rosenthal can be viewed at www.randallrosenthal.com/.

UPCOMING: Rosenthal’s work will be exhibited from August 4 to 7, 2011 at SOFA West – Santa Fe with Jane Sauer Gallery of Santa Fe, New Mexico. The show is formally titled The International Exposition of Sculpture Objects & Functional Art and held at the Santa Fe Convention Center.  www.sofaexpo.com/santa-fe/2011/index.htm

This fall, Rosenthal is exhibiting in Korea and at the Long Island Museum of American Art, History & Carriages in Stony Brook, NY.

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© 2011 Pat Rogers and Hamptons Art Hub. All rights reserved.

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