I must have been one of the first to have seen the work by Michael Parkes outside of Spain.
Michael Parkes lived and worked in Spain for some time where he was “discovered” by Gerrit Steltman and asked to have a show in his gallery Steltman ( location Rozengracht ). It must have been around 1978 when the first Parkes exhibition was held in this gallery and Gerrit showed me a preview of the works he was planning to show. I bought a small painting instantly and my parents decided to buy a larger one. I traded the small painting in for a larger one as soon as his second exhibition opened and my parents bought a second painting. It must have been 20 years later that both these larger works were sold to the US. Thanks to the promotional activities of Gerrit Steltman, Parkes had become one of the leading fantasy painters from his generation and paintings were sold for high amounts. If you ask me now what i think of Parkes. … a great painter, highly recognizable, but also one who choses the easy way of producing art and never made an effort to develop his art into a new direction. His women are beautiful and the fantasy worlds he creates are PARKES his own “Disneyland”, but it is also a world where you will not be surprised. I you have seen 100 Parkes paintings you have seen them all.
You must admire him for his technique, but there are other artists from his generation who deserve to be noticed too.
Personally i think Parkes has created fascinating worlds, but do not close you eyes for others. In the same period Gerrit Steltman has also presented artists like Massimo Rao and Fassoni . Artist who are far less predictable and whose works can still be picked up at far more reasonable prices.
for books on Parkes see www.ftn-books.com