From realLIVING, an Arkansas Times Publication, pages 18 & 19, February 2006

 Arkansas artist Warren Criswell is a unique individual. (He's not going to like this next statement.) He's almost, almost a stereotype. You know the one--the eccentric, hermetic artist wholly devoted to the world he creates on canvas and no one is ever sure what the artist will do or say next. While he embodies some of these traits, Warren doesn't exactly fit into any classification or stereotype. He doesn't really like to talk about himself, which is kind of strange for an artist. He doesn't like to talk about the meanings behind specific pieces, he'd rather the observer create their own conclusions and interpretations. He doesn't like to be interviewed (I think I made him uncomfortable). Sounds kind of quirky, doesn't he? Well, he is, but only in a good sense and he certainly made an impact on my perceptions of artistic success. This question has been circling in

The bright sunny watercolors
became dark brooding pastels
and oils . . . It was Criswell coming
back - like a bad dream.

 my head since our interview: Is an artist's success defined by monetary value or is it determined by something purer--when an artist is so passionate that everything created is an accurate expression of truth, life and what lies within? I've consulted a few of my self-proclaimed intelligent, artistic friends and most agree that only the individual artist can define the very personal rule of success. Since my little visit with Warren, I have had an "artistic awakening" of sorts and will never judge an artist by the price tag on their work. Let me get back on point because this story isn't about me or perceptions of success. It's about Warren Criswell, his art and his rule of success. (Continue story)

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