In the everyday urban living, Courtland Blade has found an artistic vision.
Rows of office cubicles, a neighborhood filled with similar looking “McMansions” and a line of ATM machines speak to the priorities people set. Though the places can be drab and gray, every burst of color is amplified.
These “non-places” — areas used every day that seem to have no identity or character — are the focus of Blade’s work. His most recent collection, “Supermodernity,” tries to figure out why society feels the need to control, manipulate and understand every aspect of the human experience.
“This idea is evident in many facets of life from science, media, to the spaces we create,” he said.
Blade has been painting for much of his life and cites a lifelong love for the arts even when he was a child. His art teachers and parents supported his creative spirit.
He learned more about the technical aspects of painting and the history of art while studying at Indiana State University and Tufts University near Boston.
“The final thing that drew me completely into art was learning the history of art when I was in college and seeing how exciting it is. It also was something that I excelled in,” he said.
Since 2007, Blade has won awards and held exhibitions in Indiana, New York, Texas and other states.
His paintings deal mostly with the spirit of consumerism and the corporate nature of society. Low ceilings, long hallways and dead ends are a frequent theme in his work, meant to depict a lack of hope that capitalism seems to foster.