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Ethan Deuel: History + Art +Magic=Artronics

by Matt Lutt

Ethan Deuel, an artorian (artist/historian), has developed a style of fine art which he calls "artonics."

Artonics is present-day interpretations of prehistoric art through the use of modern day mediums and tools to suggest a message from the past. Only his experience and exposure to the original artifacts and cave paintings allows the artonic artist to have the subjectivity and sensitivity to recreate the mystical messages of prehistoric artists.

In Deuel’s studio, he uses fiberglass, a 21st century medium that is durable, portable and accessible. He gives a collector access to ancient art, which is otherwise impossible to acquire.

What Deuel is trying to express with artonics is contemporary art that captures the story-telling and magic of the ancient wizard artists. He creates something, for the collector of fine art, which appears to be authentic pieces of ancient history.

Deuel’s interest in ancient art began with his travels to Baja, California where he experienced the largest concentration of cave paintings in the Northern hemisphere; one of them Cueva Paintada, the largest painted cave in the world was over a football field and a half long. Many of the caves that Deuel viewed in Baja were newly discovered and had only been seen by a handful of people.

Over 350 years ago, the Spaniards arrived in Baja. Their goal was to build missions from Baja to Northern California. When they discovered the awesome Painted Caves they questioned the Native Indians as to their origin. The Indians had no definitive answer, only that legend was passed on through many generations of the Giant Painters of Caves. The rediscovery of the Painted Caves in the late 1960s brought archeological evidence that the estimated age of the newest caves were more than 1,000 years old.

These paintings were created by Nomadic Indians and portrayed both coastal and mountain animals. "These paintings," says Deuel, "depict spirituality, as well as a plea for harmony and balance." It has always been Deuel’s goal to create the visual impact and true essence of the mystical and physical quality of the prehistoric art.

Soon after his travels to Baja, Deuel visited southern France where he viewed the magic of the wizard artists of the Paleolithic period (40,000-70,000 B.C.). At this time, Deuel says that he witnessed the origin of art which lies within the religious and dramatic interpretations of what was sacred in life during that era.

"Prehistoric art allows us to review the evolution of styles over a very long period of time. Not only is prehistoric art a factor in man’s artistic achievement, it sheds light upon the evolution of religion. Rock art is the expression of man’s dialogue, with his eternal values," says Deuel.

Deuel’s contemporary renditions of this Shaman Art, done with his unique style, dramatically recreate a part of our human history. One of Deuel’s favorite quotes, "We have invented nothing," was made by Pablo Picasso upon leaving the famed painted cave, Liscoux.

His entire life, Deuel has been exposed to fine art and its creation. He grew up the son of a great artist, Austin Deuel. This exposure enhanced Deuel’s desire to use his innate talents to create art that is both beautiful and functional. "Art for me is my life, not a contest in which I feel the need to win. People source me out to collect my unique, prized pieces — for collecting, as well as for their decorative needs. This demand for my artonic art has created the many facets of what I do, leading to a diverse and functional line of artwork."

Recently Deuel’s art has reached new heights and continues to climb. Sharing his incredible success are patrons such as Marty and Diane Herman, owners of Exposures International, Gallery of Fine Art, in Sedona. The Hermans have a love for art and the artists they represent, which is the driving force behind their unique gallery.

Deuel’s complete collection is on permanent display at Exposures Gallery, 561 Hwy. 179, Sedona, 520-282-1125, open 10 am to 6 pm, seven days a week.

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