B  U  B  B  L  E    G  U  M    A  R  T

Some times an artists' ideas can venture beyond the possible. Artistic vision is frequently the real "mother of invention."

Michaelangelo, is it said, had a special recipe for the blue pigments. He was not satisfied with the blue that other artists were using and so spent considerable time exploring rare minerals for their color. His recipe obviously worked very well and the ingredients are still a mystery. Leonardo DaVinci "accidentally" instigated the formal study of anatomy in his attempts to draw the perfect human form. And so it is with artist, Sherbadojay, whose quest for brighter colors and a media that had texture has led him around the world seeking his color palette in ordinary chewing gum.

His actual technique for making these stunning dreamscapes is a secret, but Sherbadojay admits that it first involves chewing the gum -- lots of chewing! He must be sure to remove all of the sugars and sweeteners that would otherwise cause the gum to become unstable when it dried. The gum is applied along with liquid acrylic, layer upon layer, and is rubbed and smeared until the desired result is achieved. Sherbadojay's favorite flavors are the fruity British gums but he also regularly uses gums from Saudi Arabia, Brazil, Indonesia and Canada, depending on the textures and colors inherent in each brand and flavor of chewing gum.


Most of the paintings are about two to three feet wide and are framed and coated with an acrylic finish to preserve them. The finished works give little hint of their masticated origins and rival oils and acrylic pigments in their brilliance, depth and detail.

Sherbadojay is perhaps the first artist who can appreciate the amount of work that classical artists put in to preparing their paints and pigments. To Sherbadojay each color represents the tangy orange, the sour lemon and the sugary strawberry flavors of his "paint." To the viewer, his work is just a pleasure to view and, outside of Singapore where chewing gum is illegal, an honor to own.

Last Month's Artist from Turkey

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