Much as once a week I like to take time off to cover warships (Wednesdays), on Sunday, I like to cover military art and the painters, illustrators, sculptors and the like that produce them.
Combat Gallery Sunday : The Martial Art of Ken Smith
While I often cover artists who are no longer with us, Smith is very much still current.
According to Radford University:
Smith currently resides in Pulaski, Virginia and is an assistant professor of graphic design at Radford University. Before this, he lived in the Knoxville area for over thirty years and is an alumnus of the University of Tennessee. He also holds a MA from Syracuse University (Syracuse, New York) and an MFA from the University of Hartford (Hartford, Connecticut). He is a member of the Coast Guard Art Program and has twice won their prestigious George Grey Award of Artistic Excellence. His paintings are featured at both the East Tennessee Historical Society and the McClung Museum in Knoxville, Tennessee, as well as at Fort Loudoun State Historic Area museum in Vonore, Tennessee.
Without further interruption:
USCG Photo: 1090892
Each year the United States Coast Guard recognizes one artist from among that year’s many submissions to the Coast Guard Art Program (COGAP) to receive the coveted George Gray Award for Artistic Excellence. 2009s recipient was Radford University professor Ken Smith for his painting, Air Station Savannah, depicting AET2 Taylor Anderson (Avionics Electrical Technician) pausing in her work aboard the HH-65 Dolphin helicopter at Coast Guard Air Station Savannah, near Savannah, Georgia. This painting has been on loan to the Pritzker Military Library in Chicago for years. (Click to big up)
Potential Coast Guard artists apply for acceptance into the COGAP program, and if accepted, are then allowed to submit works for possible inclusion in the Coast Guard’s Permanent Art Collection. The 2009 additions to the collection include 34 works by 19 artists. Of these, one work is selected to receive the George Gray Award for Artistic Excellence. Smith’s painting, Air Station Savannah, was granted this honor for 2009. A long time participant in the Coast Guard Art Program for the past two years, Smith was one of only six artists who were chosen for official Coast Guard Artist deployment in 2008, from which the painting Air Station Savannah was created.
Smith also won the GGAAE for “MSST: Sighting Down Threats” which shows a Maritime Safety and Security Team (MSST) from St. Marys, Georgia is shown securing an area of the port as an HH-60 Jayhawk helicopter prepares to drop crew members onto a tanker to determine whether the vessel is engaged in illegal activity or otherwise poses a threat.
USCG Photo 1107375
Ken Smith Pulaski, Va. Oil. Members of the Maritime Safety and Security Team (MSST) in St. Marys, Ga., secure an area of the port as an HH-60 Jayhawk helicopter moves in on a tanker on which crew failed to provide identification. Poised in the doorway of the helicopter are crew members who will be dropped by vertical insertion onto the tanker to investigate whether the vessel is engaged in illegal activity or otherwise poses a threat. Each MSST member on the ground sights his MK-18 M-4 carbine rifle in a different direction. (Click to big up)
“My paintings generally tend toward military subject matter, so I was naturally attracted to the MSSTs and their anti-terrorism mission,” said Smith. “In discussing their work… [the team’s] no-nonsense attitude really appealed to my sense of drama and of course to the idea of Semper Paratus. It also had a bit of a Star Trek flavor that I find pretty irresistible.” -Smith told USCG Media Affairs
Ken Smith’s new painting, Steady As She Goes, has been accepted into the permanent collection of the U.S. Coast Guard. In the artwork a U.S. Coast Guard service member aboard the Cutter Hollyhock steadies the hoist hook used to deploy oil skimming equipment during a multi-agency and international contingency exercise on the Detroit River. The exercise aims to enhance cooperation and coordinate response to possible oil spills and other environmental mishaps among different agencies. The cutter is a 225-foot seagoing buoy tender.
Besides Coast Guard works, he is well versed in other subjects of military history.
” At First Light” THE GWINNETT ARTILLERY at the BATTLE of FORT SANDERS. By Ken Smith
“Kollaa Holds!” by Ken Smith
“Abashed the devils stood” By Ken Smith
Oh Comrades, come rally the battle of Borodino. By Ken Smith
More on Smith: Please visit his Gallery, Blog, and tumblr.
Thank you for your work, sir.