Imagine navigating Dragon Con via the Beatles’ Yellow Submarine, or joining Dr. Who on a trip to Burning Man — such is the work of Cheney. The paintings are bright, adventurous, comical and — in spite of the references — 100 percent original. It is art that doesn’t take itself too seriously, which is one of the reasons it’s so likable.
In spite of the lighthearted themes, there are a lot of sophisticated things occurring in Cheney’s paintings regarding color and composition. He is a master at stylizing complicated subject matter like three-eyed monsters, hippie chicks, mechanical ostriches and starry-eyed eggs with legs.
Another striking aspect of the work is its scale — much larger than I had expected, and in the company of Ananda’s stylish decor, the paintings radiate. While the salon invites viewings during shop hours, you may still want to avoid gawkily plodding a course while people are getting their hair done. To do this you have two options: book yourself an appointment with one of Ananda’s capable stylists, or join Cheney for an artist’s reception Saturday.
Local performance painter, graphic designer and all-around groovy guy, Phil Cheney, has paintings hanging at Ananda Hair Studio in downtown Asheville. The opening reception is Saturday, Sept. 17, from 7:30 to 11 p.m.
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