By Jeanne Boyer MA, editor, Inland Empire Magazine, writing in the Sep. 2011 issue.
(Inland Empire Magazine does not publish online)
“CREATIVE FORCE. John Dingler was born in Gorizia, Italy and incorporates some of the elegant architecture of that country with a pop sensibility in his 3-D creations, now on view at the Riverside Community Arts Association in downtown Riverside. Dingler says that the combination of classical influence and irreverence became evident when he and his brother tossed stones at statues of Venus and Apollo at the Castello di Miramare in Trieste, Italy.
Dingler moved to Washington, D.C., then Maryland as a child, became a U. S. citizen, and later joined the U.S. Navy. He studied at UC Berkeley, has art degrees from UC Irvine and the University of Maryland, and exhibits his work internationally. He makes moviettes for you tube as well as paintings.
Politics and social issues infuse much of his work, including his Neo-Cons series, and Dinger is working on politically themed pieces for an upcoming exhibit.
While he sees the entertainment value in politics, he’s passionate about the impact of politicians and Wall Street tycoons on people’s lives. “I take life seriously,” Dingler says.
His latest project is “Diaphanous Geithner,” a portrait of U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, whose silhouettes are filled with sheer fabric with metallic dots. The Diaphanous Geithner rests on a colonnade of Doric columns that mimics the Treasury building facade, half submerged in an aquarium. Miniature Monopoly-style houses float underwater. A motorized hand between the Geithner profiles represents Dingler’s effort to influence Geithner’s thoughts (he describes it in more colorful fashion).
His work often combines photos, drawings, classical figures, and news headlines. It’s important to look closely at the images making up the background on an eight-foot tall hand called ”Sex is to Bowling as Violence is to Parachuting,” or a sculpture called “The Consumer.” While his shaped canvases were inspired by the minimalist work of Frank Stella, Dingler’s examples include figures inside the tool or gun-shaped outlines.
Dingler has taught university classes, but finds they distract from his work. “You can never do any deep, multi-layered art when you teach, he says.
By Daniel Foster PHD, Director of the Oceanside Art Museum, previously President and CEO of the Community Foundation, former director of the Riverside Art Museum, in an article special to The Press-Enterprise newspaper
< http://www.pe.com/arts/stories/PE_News_Local_S_foster17.3879ba2.html >
"Working in a Quonset hut art studio in downtown Riverside (California), John Dingler mixes bold political images and commentaries with an innovative approach to mixed media, digital and sculptural practices.
Born in northern Italy, Dingler's travels have produced a rich and diverse cultural background that informs his art. A graduate of the University of Maryland and UCI (University of California, Irvine), Dingler's education exposed him to a wealth of art history and knowledge which often produces an intersection between classic and contemporary vocabularies.
Finding inspiration from popular culture, Dingler is a master of collage, constantly reinventing his use of materials and techniques to finding new and powerful methods of conveying his message. ‘Dingler's images and shapes, which on their own would never seem to go together, inhabit the same space with a balanced chaos.”
By Janell Glessner, writing for the Riverside Art Museum’s blog about her recent visit to artist John Dingler’s studio.
< http://www.riversideartmuseum.org/blog/?p=160 >
"John Dingler is creating relevant and notable contemporary art. He is noted for his work with photographs that he digitally manipulates into thought-provoking artworks.
When I first walked into Dingler's studio, I was greeted warmly and immediately fell into his complex world of art and politics. I was struck by all of the faces of well known politicians and dictators blending with his vibrant colors, dynamic lines, collages and sculptures.
Originally hailing from the North of Italy, John Dingler (also) finds his inspiration on the streets of Riverside, California. As a graduate of the University of Maryland and the University of California, Irvine, Dingler utilizes his knowledge of art history to create one-of-a-kind shaped canvases. Influenced by sources as diverse as Gothic architecture, Renaissance frescos, and 1960s artists like Frank Stella, Dingler combines classic concepts with contemporary technique. This curious blend of the ordinary and extraordinary yields remarkably unique works of art.
Beginning with photographic images of buildings, nature, television, and politics, Dingler utilizes digital technology to then compose thought-provoking assemblages. Dingler’s work draws in audience members with its sometimes graphic mixture of imagery, color, and content.
Upon closer inspection, I was shown how Dingler’s works correspond to each other as he constantly reinvents his own work by recycling original images in new pieces. For example, in his “Deconstructed Odd Shape” series, Dingler features images from his earlier “Blizzard Series”.
One can also see this evolution of work in “The Consumer” and “Plastic Landscapes” in which Dingler used left over materials from his Consumer to create landscape images of Southern California.
From speaking with Dingler, I got the impression that he is always challenging himself to be inspired by the world around him and to create new techniques in order to accurately convey his observations. Finding inspiration from popular culture, Dingler creates powerful commentaries on American politics. In “The Consumer”, a sculptural composition, Dingler creates a portrait of society shedding light on greed, consumption, sex and violence.
“The Consumer” is not Dingler’s only politically charged work. In “Monument to Violence”, Dingler portrays predominant American political figures as corrupt machines with metal running through their heads and just below them are figures of “blind” leaders with pins through their eyes. With wavy lines and newspaper collage, Dingler creates a sea of humanity full of ominous tombstones.
Through works like “The Consumer” and “Monument to Violence”, Dingler is inviting his audience to observe and examine the world we live in. John Dingler’s revolutionary style is both relevant and engaging for not only the art aficionados but also to casual observers who take the time to appreciate such unique creations"
Call 951-787-1881 to contact the artist for more information or to arrange a studio visit."
By Jonathan Green PHD, writing for the Culver Center for the Arts, UC Riverside, about the Inland Empire Filmmakers, Second Thursday of Each Month film screenings: John Dingler’s Riverside Moviettes, 2012 Thursday, May 10, 2012
< http://events.ucr.edu/cgi-bin/display.cgi?comp_id=37634:20120510190000 >
"Riverside’s own quirky and provocative artist John Dingler— well known for his critical and socially themed paintings and sculptures—has been quietly making short films that he calls moviettes. These alternately politically biting and lyrically beautiful short pieces will now be presented for the first time as an extended meditation on Riverside itself. A flâneur with a camera, Dingler haunts on Riverside’s streets finding splendor and oddity, even encouraging Police Chief Sergio Diaz to suggest a conceptual art installation: Tiny Tents on the Mall. If you love Riverside but want an unorthodox view of the city, this is not to be missed." µ
By the Artist
"My work often begins as a note or a drawing, leading to full-scale painting or 3D sculptural version with the hope that it can still hold together the idea without diffusion. It then becomes a project that I may spend months on, depending on finances and time. In other instances, I may begin by taking casual photographs which I incorporate into a larger idea for a project. Later, these may form the basis for another series of works.
Sometimes I approach a project as a continuation of a previous project that yielded unsatisfactory results. The "Odd-Shaped Canvases" series, where a few had the shape of ovals, is a case in point. After determining that the oval shapes appeared static, lacking the intended visual “pop,” I used various techniques to shatter the composition so that the narrative was transformed into a predominantly abstract pattern while retaining the same general colors. This resulted into into a series of new compositions which depended on aesthetics more rather than a story.
To celebrate a new exhibit space in town, the Riverside Arts Council Projects Gallery, I expanded on this theme by making the compositions playfully more complex and exuberant so that they took on a Baroque quality which I felt I needed to investigate.
I have taught traditional fine art, digital imaging, art history, art appreciation, computer technology, and systems analysis courses at colleges and universities, including University of California, Riverside, California Baptist University, La sierra University, and Riverside Community College." µ