Artist tries to make point with humor

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CLINTON — A local artist is putting a lighter spin on some of his previous work as a way to give people a chance to smile during this time of frustration and sadness brought on by the coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic.

Pen and ink sketch and drawing artist, Tim Pryputniewicz, 60, of Clinton has painted masks on his previous art work to not only, hopefully, bring some levity to a serious situation, but to make a serious point as well.

“It’s almost as if to say if the animals in the pictures will wear masks then perhaps we should too,” Pryputniewicz said. “Lets take care of everybody’s health.”

One might say looking out for his own health is what started this new expression. The artist was out on his daily walk into the village one Sunday morning about two weeks ago when he was inspired.

“I actually stopped for a rest on the bench in the village green across from the fountain,” he recalled. “As I sat I looked up at the statute of the girl in the fountain I noticed someone had placed a discarded mask on her face.”

Pryputniewicz said he thought that was kind of a “neat idea.”.

“I took a picture of it and took it home,” he said. “Once in my studio I took prints that I already had of the fountain girl and painted a little mask on it and then had prints made.”

In addition, to the pen and ink Pryputniewicz adds watercolor to finish a piece.

“Once I did the fountain girl,” he explained. “I thought that one would appeal to most anyone, but then for the children, or maybe the adults too, I could paint some of my animal portraits wearing a mask. So I added the masks to those prints.”

Right now Pryputniewicz has masks on a gorilla named “Caesar” - a group of three penguins, a dairy cow, and a flying pig to name only a few.

Pryputniewicz usually offers his work through the Artisan’s Corner co-op at 1 College St. in the village, but since the store’s been closed for approximately six weeks he finds himself with not much to keep him occupied. Here was a new project.

“The store is a mainstay for all the artists there, and definitely for me,” he said. “Besides working over the counter I normally do a lot of matting and framing for people and all that has come to a halt at this point.”

“I’m just trying to give people a little chuckle to help them through their day,” he said. Not to make light of a very serious situation. But to cope through a little levity.

Pryputniewicz said his work is posted on the Artisan’s Corner Facebook page where the artist wrote this introduction to what he calls “COVID-19 Critters!!”

Introducing : “Covid 19 Critters!” Doing their part to “Flatten The Curve ! “

But seriously, this pandemic is a real crisis that must be taken seriously for sure! I hope all of you and your families are staying healthy and enjoying all of this family time together!

Sometimes during a time of crisis , it’s our sense of humor that gets us through it! So I have added a bit of humor to some of my artwork, and I hope it will lighten your day a little!

After viewing the pictures there will be information of how you can purchase these at a special price, with partial proceeds being donated to local charities that are in need at this time. Please enjoy!

Pryputniewicz hopes people see where his mindset is will find the mirth in his madness. Once the crisis is over he sees the artwork perhaps giving people a unique remembrance of what has been an enduring time since the crisis began.

“My art is something I let speak for itself,” he explained. “Regardless of my personal opinions, it’s up to the viewer of my art to determine what the message is. To me, it’s serious situation that should be taken seriously, be careful, but at the same time we still need to retain our sense of humor and hopefully maybe this is a way people can connect to that.”

“The arts are therapeutic, whether it’s music, a good book, or a picture to look at,” he said.

If anyone is interested in obtaining one of these prints Pryputniewicz said he can be contacted through his email address woodenpigcny@gmail.com, through the Artisan’s Corner Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/ArtisansCornerClinton. or you can call him direct at 315-794-3956.

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