I don’t typically notice art. There, I said it. Unless something features a particularly bold color schemata or offers up a brigade of quirky mixed media, it’s usually doesn’t garner a second glance from me.
Then there’s artist Dave Coon’s oddly-specific, hyper-colorful, contemporary, 3D cube art which I could obsessively stare at all day. Like a crazy person.
His weird, perfectly aligned geometric patterns enthrall any bit of OCD I have. Even weirder? I usually have zero desire to grope art. Coon’s work—while likely anti-tactile—is the stuff my big, inner kid just wants to rub my hands over repeatedly. And don’t even get me started on the electric colors that bring me insta-joy. “My art expresses contrasting bright colors and shapes in contemporary designs,” says Coon. “My art is unique with the materials and colors used, creating differing views based on your perspective and lighting. Once the cubes are painted and glued down, I use a clear epoxy resin all around the cubes to give it that mirror-like shine.” (Ahhh—well, that makes sense. I can see my reflection in his artwork. No wonder I’m such a fan.)
His art is the perfect outlet for him to be creative and structured at the same time. Trust me, it’s not like anything you’ve seen before—it’s busy, bright and bespoke. “I wanted to create something unique and challenging,” says Coon. “My designs are something that insists attention and not be just another painting blending into the wall.”
Well, goal achieved.
He starts with clear acrylic cubes as his medium. (Think transparent dice.) That’s when the painstaking precision sets in. “Each cube is hand-painted and it can be time-consuming, but I love the process,” says Coon. “I have a 3’x3′ piece that contains a whopping 444 cubes!”
My favorite pieces offer up über-DayGlo colors. Clearly, Coon and I are on the same page. His fave handiwork? “Fluorescent or metallic bright colors,” he says. Some are so trippy that when they’re well lit, I swear you can see them from space. Many start with a blue or black background—“that’s by design,” he says—and then Coon throws in noteworthy, contrasting colors for posterity. “I really enjoy the interesting color combinations my clients choose too,” he says.
Coon’s first piece which was done by more error than trial, hung in his living room and would always spur plenty of conversation from guests, myself included. I wanted to know the who/what/when/where of how he did it. Honestly, I still can’t put my finger on why his art is so trance-worthy to me.
After getting peppered with questions, it didn’t take long before he decided to create a few more pieces for friends and family. In the process, he started to hone his skills and each piece became a little more nuanced and detailed. Before long, designing his symmetric-centric concepts became just as meticulous as hand-painting each cube. It’s hard to compare his work to anything out there. It’s almost like abstract artist Josef Albers and the creators of Looney Tunes had a love child.
Coon’s work was displayed at Art Basel in Miami last year and he’s looking forward to an even bigger rollout this year. With a new website and plenty of epoxy on hand, you can expect even more intricate designs in the next few months—including several larger form pieces. (How he does not black out from epoxy fumes is still a mystery to me.) Want to know more? Interested in commissioning a piece? You can see Coon’s work online and at numerous art venues in the South Florida area. You can contact him directly for more info.