Fan Mail - Moonlit Dream (submitted by Kate)

Synchronicity is a strange thing. There are times in people’s lives when there seem to be none-at-all and other times when there are so many coincidences, you can’t help but wonder about the significance; the meaning behind the snapshots of time that practically beg to be critiqued in a gallery.

 
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Two years ago, I returned from a vacation at a seaside resort in central California. The trip was exactly what was needed to restore a sense of calm and connection to the universe. Even though my life wasn’t where I wanted it to be, one evening I somehow “knew” things were about to change for the better.

At the time, I was single, thinking about relocating and dreaming about having a child. Being thirty-four meant the clock was ticking and I was seriously considering artificial insemination. But, that changed the night I went for a swim in the ocean under the full light of the moon. Floating on my back I stared at the contrast of a dark sky and the bright moon, and for the first time in many years, I stopped thinking; stopped trying to control my future and I was… pregnant with possibility.

You might be wondering why I’m writing to the artist about my experience.

When I returned from that vacation, and reality starting consuming hope, a friend came to my home with a gift; a painting from John Pitre. It was called, “Moonlit Dream.” When I unwrapped the present and saw what lay beneath the paper, I cried so hard my friend had to ask, “Are those happy tears or is this a hormone thing?”

I laughed through tears (which is “as they say,” the greatest emotion), placed the painting on the couch and gave him a hug. We’d been friends for many years, but it wasn’t until that moment that I realized he was the One for me. We made eye contact. He smiled and said, “Do you know how many years I’ve been waiting for you to look at me that way?”

One kiss and ten months later we welcomed a baby girl. Her name is Hope and she’s a night child; sleeping during the day, staring at the sky at night. I would have written sooner about how a single painting changed my life, but as you can see I’ve been a bit busy. Not only did I marry the man of my dreams and have a baby— who has all ten fingers and toes, but we relocated to San Diego.

Last weekend, as we unpacked our things and began settling into our new home, I unwrapped Moonlit Dream. I know it’s unhealthy to be attached to things, but I can’t help it. Every time I look at the painting, I feel the same way I did floating in the Pacific Ocean and kissing my husband for the first time. Life can be filled with magic and if I ever begin to forget that, all I need to do is pour a glass of wine and look at Moonlit Dream to restore a sense of calm and a connection to the universe.

I didn’t know how potent art could be, but to say Pitre’s work is powerful… is an understatement. His painting didn’t just move me, it altered the course of my life. Now I’m living authentically and you have no idea how good it feels. Please know I’m forever grateful for a gift that keeps on giving.

--Your greatest fan, Kate

Fan Mail - Temptations of a False God (submitted by Carla)

I recently purchased a print of Temptations of a False God, not only because I admire John Pitre’s work, but the message in this painting is one I need to be reminded of. There’s a reason I bought it, I’ve been (mostly) sober for over 40 years. For those times when the temptation to use becomes overwhelming, this painting serves as a daily reminder to abstain. 

 
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Every addict and every addiction has a trigger. Like a gun in the hands of a maniac, you never know when or where the impulse to shoot(up) might occur.

In recovery they say, “day-by-day.” I wish it were that easy. For me, even after all these years, it’s more like minute-by-minute. Some people have addictions. Maybe they eat, drink or shop too much. Me, I don’t have an addiction, I’m an addict. What they call a “white-knuckler.”  To be honest, I’m not that discerning either. If you can pop it, snort it, shoot it, or swallow it, I’ll do it.

I mean… I’ve done it.

Like Robert Downey Jr., I grew up with addicts. Addicts who didn’t hide the drugs from their children and addicts who thought it was funny to see a kid stoned or high. Before you start feeling sorry for me, don’t. The problem wasn’t taking drugs or alcohol— I LOVED it— the problem was… I had no problem with it, but everybody else did. Teachers, bosses, friends, lovers.

I lost everything and everybody by the time I was 19 years old. Do you know what it’s like to pass out in Minnesota and wake up naked in the back of a van in New Orleans and have no idea how you got there? It might be a funny story if I were a guy, like the one in the painting who’s passed out on white pills, but I’m not.

Back then, I was thought of as attractive. The type of pretty girl who some guys would love to see unconscious and at that point I had no idea who I was with. I don’t mean I didn’t recognize the person… there was no one else in the van. This was at a time when there were no cell phones and I had nothing to wear and no money.

Luckily the story ended much better than it could have, with a knock on the back door and a woman asking if she could come in with some clothes. I didn’t know her, but I’ll never forget what she said after I dressed, “Child, I’m not going to tell you what to do… Lord knows I ain’t been no angel… but if you don’t get some help, you’re not going to make it to twenty-five.”

Not only did she give me clothes, a bus ticket home to Minnesota and money for food, she gave me a future. When I saw Temptations of a False God, I remembered her words, “Lord knows I ain’t been no angel…” and realized I’d worshipped drugs, idolized them. Back then I thought giving them up was akin to forsaking God, but the painting helps me to remember the pain and destruction that can happen when I put my faith in the wrong things.

I’m no angel either, but at least I’m a better human being than I used to be and Temptations of a False God is helping me to stay that way. Many thanks Mr. Pitre, you’re giving me strength, day-by-day, hour-by-hour and minute-by-minute.

Cheers! (yes, pun intended) – Carla

Rare Artworks by Surrealist Master Found 30 Years After Studio Fire

25 hand-sketched studies, early patent drawings, and original Pitre oils found

Thirty years after a fire destroyed the home of surrealist master painter John Pitre, several rare works—once thought destroyed—have been found undamaged.

The collection, which a studio manager found in a broken drawer, contains unpublished original drawings, color studies, and sketches.

Jazz
Envy of Angels
Terminal Anxiety

A devastating fire destroyed most of Pitre's personal possessions thirty years ago, including his original art catalogue, prototypes for a range of inventions, as well as artifacts from a lifetime of international travel and a self-designed ultralight aircraft. 

After the fire, Pitre managed to rebuild his body of work and become one of the top-selling painters of his time. Often called a modern-day DaVinci, Pitre designed and piloted experimental aircraft as well, and he founded Natural Power Concepts, a renewable energy technology company. He also invented two of the most financially successful fitness products of all time.

The items were found by a studio manager in a forgotten cabinet of locked metal drawers.

“Some of the drawers had been pinched closed and obviously not opened for years, maybe decades,” said Zach Thomson, manager of Pitre Fine Arts in Honolulu. “When we moved the studio, I dislodged the drawers, pulled everything out, and was shocked to find a huge stack of original drawings, color studies, and sketches - many of which remain unseen and unpublished to this day. John and everyone else had thought these items perished in the fire.” 

Pitre's best-known works include “Restrictions” (which has sold over seven million copies in print) and “Split World,” which portrays the struggle of nature against industrial expansion and pollution. His career has spanned over fifty years.

The newly-discovered works are currently undergoing review and evaluation and may be made available to the public in the near future.

Seeker of Dreams Color Note
Fantasy Forest Color Note
Voyage Of Man

Images of the newly-discovered works are available at [http://www.johnpitre.com/exclusivemembers/].