Brian Capien is an artist – a legit creative who, like most artists I know, wouldn’t know how to NOT make art. For him art is a passion and an instinct.
He is really quite good, and this year he entered a piece in an art show: Summit Artspace’s “Out of the Box,” an exhibit for which, according to the Summit Artspace website, “artists are sought to create unique box-themed artwork to donate to Summit Artspace. The boxes will be exhibited and auctioned at the Arts Alive! awards celebration, a fundraiser directly benefiting community exhibitions and art programs at Summit Artspace.”
…and oh, yea…Capien is 7 years old.
He also loves dogs, ice cream and helping his dad fix stuff around the house the way most kids do, but he is not most kids. He loves dressing up, donning a fedora and showing up with his dad and his Ya-Ya at exhibit openings at Summit Artspace and the Akron Art Museum, as well as other area galleries. He has a love and an appreciation for the work he visits, and he especially enjoys creating his own art.
I had the pleasure of meeting and talking with Capien the other day and I was completely charmed by this boy. I was expecting a quiet, introverted child, but it didn’t take long to figure out that he is at heart just like any other kid in almost every way.
First, I asked Brian about the artwork he created and donated to Summit Artspace. The piece, entitled “Box of Crayons,” literally takes the crayons right out of the box and onto the canvas. The result is a stunning swirl of colors that would surely turn heads at the silent auction.
He told me that this piece was not his first artistic endeavor using crayons. Last year at Christmastime Capien used his own money to purchase glass ball ornaments and crayons. He broke the crayons up and put pieces inside the balls. Afterward he used a hair dryer to melt the crayons and create really lovely one-of-a-kind holiday ornaments. When he decided to try his hand at selling them he quickly sold out.
The one thing Capien was a little apprehensive about was having to part with his artwork when it sold at auction. Like anyone truly passionate about their art, he expressed that he would be sad to see it go.
On the day of the Arts Alive! celebration, Capien arrived in his signature fedora looking dapper for the event. As he and his family moved through the room, many of the attendees were anxious to meet this charming little boy with a great big talent.
Featured performers, The Gage Brothers, while admiring his work, expressed interest in collaborating with Capien sometime in the future to create cover art for an album.
Arts Alive! honorees like Wandering Aesthetics’ Kyle Jozsa and Coffee Pot Café’s David DiDomenico voiced their admiration for Capien’s art. DiDomenico offered him space in his Main Street coffee shop/gallery to display and sell his work. The evening’s co-emcee Roger Riddle, ArtsNow Executive Director Nicole Mullet and Arts Alive! event chair and hostess Brenda Cummins each offered encouraging words and expressed how much they enjoyed the young man’s art.
As the evening’s auction was closed and the winning bids were announced, Capien was happy to discover that, while his piece sold, he wouldn’t have to say goodbye to it. The person who bought it keeps office space in Summit Artspace and plans to hang it there.
The lucky buyer turned out to be – ME! I invited Capien and his family to visit “Box of Crayons” any time they liked.
As years go by, I look forward to seeing what the future holds for Brian Capien. Will he choose a career in the art world? Time will tell – he has plenty of time to figure that out. Regardless, creating and sharing his art and having a family who encourage him to continue making it are giving him tools that will serve him well whatever path he chooses.
This post sponsored by SummitLive365.com: