The Ballpointer introduced its PICKS page in 2015 to showcase noteworthy ballpoint pen artwork and allow respective artists to explain their work in their own words. In the years since then we have also featured bonafide ballpoint masterpieces by some of the medium's greatest talents as PICKS SPECIALS, along with in-depth interviews about the work. To celebrate Year Six of The Ballpointer we are republishing two PICKS which set standards by two master ballpointers whose work continues to command respect.
PENNAME PICK by O. Lebron originally posted Dec 3, 2015
James Mylne・London, England・
FLASHBACK posted January 10, 2020
STARTING POINTS The Ballpointer PICKS SPECIALS 2015
TITLE ・DATE ・MEDIUM ・SIZE
Samsara & The City 2015, ballpoint pen, ink markers, gouache, acrylic & spray paints on matte board, 60 x 85cm (24 x 34'', shown cropped). Artwork © James Mylne
A Far East ballpoint pen masterpiece has finally made its way West. Interested parties in the New York area proving worthy enough to score an appointment have a rare opportunity to view original Lennie Mace artwork the likes of which have yet to be properly exhibited in the city. Mace extended an invitation to The Ballpointer and, being the de facto New York correspondent, apparently I proved worthy. I was surely interested. It's been more than a decade since the absentee New Yorker has had anything on display in his hometown, so when a long-time New York patron offered showroom space, Mace accepted. The artist was not, himself, on hand when I visited (Mace is reported to be building some kind of "Castle" in the Japanese Alps) but I was given a private walk-through by the host patron and corresponded with Mace afterward; voluminous E-chats which centered on CosPlayStation:2011, a piece meriting attention greater than this humble reporter may be capable of providing... Read the fully archived article
''It's like an indirect collaboration between me and the art directors at Sony. They provided the central character, a big sky and panoramic proportions, and I took it from there. Nice working with ya.''
Lennie Mace, August 2015
CosPlayStation:2011 drawn between 2006-2012, ballpoint pen
& cut vinyl decals on Japan Railway poster, 146 x 103cm
(57.5 x 40.5'', shown cropped). Artwork © Lennie Mace
PENNAME PICK by B. Neufeld originally posted Sept 1, 2015
Lennie Mace・Tokyo, Japan・
Overworked rabbit seeks nirvana in London is how James Mylne's Samsara & The City might read as a back page Personals listing in a weekly tabloid. Yes, sir, Bugs Bunny does Britain, or, by the look of him, Britain has done Bugs . The scwewy wabbit we all know and love is clearly out of character here; this is no Warner Bros' Looney Tune cartoon, boys and girls. Mylne informs us that in this incarnation Bugs is, in fact, a banker ; a banker who's been sucked of his soul and is victim to contemporary life's grinding temptations... Read the fully archived article
"London is one of the greediest financial capitals on the planet. We have more bankers in the population than any other city. I meet them all the time. Not one of them has ever expressed any positive feelings about their work. I wanted to single one out as the subject of the drawing. I decided on representing one through Bugs Bunny.
I painted him looking tired from overwork and grumpy from being unsatisfied. When (he) grew up he didn’t want to be a banker, he thought life was going to be fun and beautiful like the rest of us thought."
James Mylne, November 2015
Since 2014・Volume 7