Symbols of the mental struggle
The majority of my work is driven by some kind of theme or concept. Earlier works were really busy and more "of the hand" whereas the new works are more refined and simplified, and outsourcing isn't uncommon. "Symbols of the mental struggle!" I work in a wide range of mediums, which suits my personality. In elementary school I could never sit still at my desk and have always had more energy than most! I also tend to be impatient, which has been a challenge. However, I have learned to fully embrace and almost celebrate my weaknesses as unique strengths. I own what I do and how I do it and don't apologize if you don't like it! I have always thought of making art, music, writing, theatre, etc., as one thing: "creating things" or "making art." The same goes for the act of creating things by using whatever material or medium necessary for the work. It's not about me or where the work takes me. It's about the work itself, and the work having its own voice. Not just a voice, but a strong one!
Ideas have never been a problem for me. Many of the works come from simple ideas that are usually very clear to me as to what they mean. The neon Deer Blind, for example, came from the idea of doing a series of drawings and sculptures of steeples. I recently drove to all 50 states in the USA and did a large body of work called "My America." I saw many repetitious things from state to state. One of them, of course, was churches! And steeples are in every little town's skyline. Similar but different, and recognized by everyone. Driving along, I passed a 13-foot tripod deer blind on the side of the highway and all I saw was an implied steeple! So I bought the deer blind and outfitted it with white neon on the legs symbolizing a steeple and a yellow neon on the circular guard rail symbolizing a halo. From my point of view it's very clear what this piece means to me, but it may be wide open for interpretation by others. This is one of the things I love about art, the "in the eye of the beholder" idea.
I am very inspired by things around me. Someone told me once that my work seemed very "regional," another person said it was very "Southwest." I do live in the Southwest, and grew up in Fresno California, so no doubt some of that has seeped in, and that's fine. I don't think of my work as regional. I think of it as universal. "The world is my playground" and I'm going to pull from all of my experiences and create things. Hopefully when I'm gone the works I create will be strong enough to keep on keeping on and have a strong enough voice of their own to move people.
Bale Creek Allen was born in California to native born Texan artist parents. He was the first recipient of a four year degree from Boston's prestigious School of the Museum of Fine Arts. Bale moved to Austin in 1991, and opened Gallery 68 from 1995-2000. Afterwards, Bale continued to create his own bodies of work in a multitude of mediums such as bronze sculpture, painting, photography, neon, woodwork, spoken word, music and theatre. In 2016 he opened BCA Gallery in Austin, feeling compelled to bring national and international contemporary art, performances and music to Austin. Five years and thirty shows later, Bale transitioned his studio and gallery to Sundance Square in the heart of downtown Fort Worth. Bale Creek Allen Gallery was voted "Best Gallery in Fort Worth 2022" by Fort Worth Weekly.