Phil Burns Egg Artwork

 
 
 

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Phil Burns Egg Artwork

Phil Burns Egg Artwork

Charlotte, NC

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Phil Burns-In His Own Words at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G70J6eBnn9Q. An Egg A Day video at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4lGNmSpN58w. Original music on both videos by Thomas Hodges.

Born in Los Angeles in 1926, Phil Burns joined the Army at 17 (WWII). After the war, he stayed in Paris and studied at the Académie Julian on the GI Bill. When Phil returned to the United States, he was invited to spend a few days at the Connecticut estate of Alice De Lamar, a Palm Beach socialite who cultivated artists. One of her other guests was the Russian surrealist artist Pavel Tchelitchew. Phil asked Tchelitchew what he could do to be a better artist - he said to draw an egg every day. Returning to Los Angeles, Phil’s uncle got him a job at in the art department at Universal International Pictures. He became an art director at CBS, then NBC, designing sets for the early days of live television. After his television days, he did interior design and showrooms.

Phil moved to “Rancho Motherclucker,” his house in Fallbrook, CA in 1982. Decades later, recovering from unsuccessful back surgery, Phil remembered Tchelitchew's advice to 'draw an egg every day', and from 1995-2008 he drew over 3,400 variations on the egg while suffering from chronic back pain. Phil also wrote more than 35 plays during this same period. Read more about the plays on the blog.

Artist Statement: “I started doing these drawings in 1995 when I couldn’t sleep thru the night and would wake up hurting at 3am. So I’d get up, slip into my sweats and draw with a crow quill pen and India ink on light weight illustration board cut into 7-1/2” x 8” pieces. The size was dictated by cutting 30” x 40” sheets, the cutting with a mat knife was the hardest part because my left hand couldn’t hold the board. I have learned to love the world at 3am, the stillness and newness. And I’m glad to have found a way to distract myself from the pain that would make 4am a nightmare. I draw until 7 or 8, eat some breakfast, feed the chickens and nap. These drawings… don’t mean anything, there’s no message or theme or plan. They’re drawn for me and if anyone is amused or diverted…that’s OK too. I had fun and they kept me from thinking of myself and cursing the old body. I’m lucky to have been able to do them.” Phil Burns, 20 December 1996

Phil died at his home on the evening of April 22, 2014, one month shy of this 88th birthday. He was working on his play "Do You Remember Sex."

 

Irimoya Roof Egg by Phil Burns

 

Oeuf Fine by Phil Burns

 

Leaning Tower of Eggs by Phil Burns

 

Hammers and Egg by Phil Burns

 

Fragile Egg by Phil Burns

 

Flying Blue Egg by Phil Burns

 

Egg balancing Feather by Phil Burns

 

Eggs in Wire Basket by Phil Burns

 

Eggs Egg by Phil Burns

 

Eggs and Eyeglasses by Phil Burns

 

Egg Ouch by Phil Burns

 

Egg on Sofa by Phil Burns

 

Egg Landing by Phil Burns

 

Egg in Vise by Phil Burns

 

Egg in Frame by Phil Burns

 

Egg in Golf Tee by Phil Burns

 

Egg in Doorway by Phil Burns

 

Eggs in Crystal Dome by Phil Burns

 

Egg Eyes Red by Phil Burns

 

Egg Drawing xx9802 by Phil Burns

 

Egg Drawing 129728 by Phil Burns

 

Egg Drawing 129709 by Phil Burns

 

Egg Drawing 129505 by Phil Burns

 

Egg Drawing 120049 by Phil Burns

 

Egg Drawing 129501 by Phil Burns

 

Egg Drawing 110209 by Phil Burns

 

Egg Drawing 119501 by Phil Burns

 

Egg Drawing 110021 by Phil Burns

 

Egg Drawing 109610 by Phil Burns

 

Egg Drawing 100248 by Phil Burns

 

Egg Drawing 100036 by Phil Burns

 

Egg Drawing 090020 by Phil Burns

 

080014 by Phil Burns

 

Egg Drawing 079725 by Phil Burns

 

Egg Drawing 070245 by Phil Burns

 

Egg Drawing 069827 by Phil Burns

 

Egg Drawing 060026 by Phil Burns

 

Egg Drawing 059836 by Phil Burns

 

Egg Drawing 059711 by Phil Burns

 

Egg Drawing 049618 by Phil Burns

 

Egg Drawing 049603 by Phil Burns

 

Egg Drawing 040249 by Phil Burns

 

Egg Drawing 040003 by Phil Burns

 

Egg Drawing 039917 by Phil Burns

 

Egg Drawing 039620 by Phil Burns

 

Chicken on Egg Temple by Phil Burns

 

Egg Drawing 030005 by Phil Burns

 

Chicken Lands on Egg Moon by Phil Burns