Mark Murphy, designer, illustrator and entrepeneur

We met Mark Murphy at the Art Now Show (Claremont Hotel) during Art Basel Miami. The Art Now space was very run down and worn out (much like old college dormitories) with long, unbroken, dark hallways without windows and with steel doors. The place seemed dirty and haphazard. So, we followed the breadcrumbs and found Mark in a sparkling and bright corner space (he admitted that he cleaned and cleaned the space to the shock and surprise of the cleaning staff that his space never looked this good). His work was beautiful and presented in a very methodical way--with a bookshelf of his self published publications, his Known show (as promoted on his blog) and his big,smart and happy personality filling the space. Mark told us all about his books and love of doing it right--all archival and well designed. Mark is proud of his relationships with his illustrator friends and encourages them to take their work as far as it could go--and it shows in the beautiful, case bound books that he produces.

I was taken by Matt Haber's delicate head (see above), Marc Burckhardt's Harlot, Cathy Bleck's inspiring scratchboard illustrations and the animal head from A. J. Fosik which was well crafted and had a great design and color sense. For collectors, Mark Murphy's little gem of a space within the dingy confines of the Claremont is the ticket. One can pick up gorgeous originals from celebrated illustrator/artists on the upswing of their careers. If one had $20M to spend, you could buy yourself a collection with Mr. Murphy along with starting a little limited edition library as well (more on the books here>>).

I am so taken with Cathy Bleck's work, I have pulled out my scratchboard tools and may start scribing some black boards tomorrow. Lets see if it's fun, it works, and if it's quicker than ink.
Mark Murphy says she is now creating her own boards along with rubbing pigment into the coating. I think I would opt for photoshop helping our with the color and image manipulation.

Mark is a very strong and positive force for illustrators, designers and the space in between. He has a great design sense and passion for everything he does--and I admire his energy, personal mission, sense of quality, drive for excellent art and production and love for his work. It is a remarkable thing. It has rubbed off a bit on this person.

You go, Mark!

From Mark's blog on the image above: Matt Haber celebrates the narrative tradition of cartons and comic books. Matt’s character-driven works and doll-like characters are small pawns in his constantly evolving storybook. Mr. Haber has worked as a Disney animator in the past and currently works for Fox animation studios, working experiences that has evolved his love for rich storytelling. You can see his latest painting, entitled, “Mask,” at