Posted April 24, 2017 – Narrated by Carmen
When you stare deep into his third eye, you will see an Airstream.
The Airstream you see there in his eye may be your Airstream, or the Airstream of your dreams – but most of the time the Airstream you see in Frank’s eye, is Diva.
Francis (Frank) DiBona is a serious man, an educated man, a healer and a physician. Frank has few loves: His wife Debbie, his Jack Russell, Rosie …
… and Diva, his 2008 Airstream.
Frank also loves his beautifully restored vintage home in one of the most desired neighborhoods in the USA.
Yet, Frank is often viewing Asheville, North Carolina in the distance from his rearview mirror …
…because Diva is taking Frank away again … taking him and Debbie and Rosie to places they’ve never been, or to places they once knew and want to see again, or to places in their dreams that might be real but to know for certain one must go a’wandering.
For five years now, Diva and Frank and his loved ones have repeatedly engaged in this “Not Asheville” thing.
It’s all been going quite well.
In fact, Diva has made Frank a hero among Airstream Addicts and the like, and it has nothing to do with his former career as a physician – except this new work also makes people smile and feel better. Frank calls it “dabbling …”
…dabbling with a purpose.
Airstreamers know that every dark shadow following you from behind is only your future Airstream trying to find you …
Diva found Frank when he was still working as a nephrologist. They dramped (driveway camped) together for a few months while Frank slowly and methodically retired from the day job.
During that stay-cation honeymoon, Diva studied Frank’s potential. Well, he spoke several languages, was astute in digital technology and, in their youth, both Diva and Frank had unfulfilled ambitions in art history.
Diva knew they could make beautiful music together. So, she sank her rivets deep and fast, and now together, the chemistry is nothing less than magic.
Frank DiBona’s physician-dry sense of humor plays well in his new Airstream lifestyle.
His work – opportunistic, yet contemplative – ranges between high-kitsch and low-art.
His predatory dadaist style drives it’s stakes into easy prey like Whistler’s Mother and Blue Boy …
… and some tough customers too, like Edvard Munch and Goya
If some are compelled to dismiss a genuine DiBona as art-bombing or simple mash-ups then, nothing to see here.
But, expect DiBona fans to call out critics as jerks if they do not, at least, acknowledge skill and expertise before they move along and, hopefully, slip on a steaming pile of flamingo scat.
Iconic images from the masters of the renaissance and impressionist period dominate DiBona’s work.
But he doesn’t always camp there. He’s also known to hitch-up to epocal photographic images …
The moon landing, a favorite point of interest.
Frank keeps a vast file containing thousands of images, each competing for his attention until he takes fancy – usually while riding his bicycle or walking Rosie in the park or during a Happy Hour with Debbie.
I’m holding out for a Flemish floral one of these days, or perhaps one of those massive presepi scenes in Naples, Italy. Ah, if only the artist would withdraw himself from his current exploitations …
DiBona’s work – while not oblivious to American iconography of manifest destiny and western expansion –
… makes a deliberate leap into the universal idea that if all individuals – right from the get-go – were equipped with a shiny moving castle of their own …
… what a wonderful world it would be!
Frank DiBona’s Flickr account where you can see all of Frank’s creations
20 thoughts on “Diva Ex Machina”
Outstanding issue of the blog! Is any of this art for sale?
Hey Larry! I have no idea … But I would imagine that Frank has high-resolution images. He might do custom work for a fee, but I don’t know.
They are all great. I like Hopper, but everything Frank does, is amazing!
This is great! I love it.
Great post. Love it. Love seeing everything Frank does. If I had to name a favorite, it would be the Two Davids. It just makes me laugh!
My favorite is usually the next one he does– he has a delightfully unpredictable eye! Meanwhile, I’m sorry you didn’t include Frank’s most controversial image, the Two Brides. It was the image that launched a ginormous website.
Here is the photo:
Awesome thanks for Sharing. His talent is ridiculous.
I love his art!
Frank is a rock star. My favorite was a Tom Jones he did by request but all his work is fabulous
Absolutely perfect article celebrating the unique talents and visions of an “addicted” man!
Fantastic! Love the interpretation!
As one who plays with PhotoShop a little I can tell you that the effort and skill that Frank puts into these pieces is second to none. Well done Frank and congratulations.
Here’s what I adore about Frank’s work: he reminds us to look at beautiful art. I’ll often peruse Frank’s featured artist’s scope of work. Better still, his range keeps us on our toes, from pin-ups to the Pope he conveys on “paper” what all Airstream Addicts inherently know-even the best things in life are better with an Airstream.
Finally, and most seriously, my favorite piece: Two Brides. This is the piece that attracted me to his work, better still, it creates conversation around a topic that should be discussed — wait, maybe it needs no discussion — just acceptance. Love is love. We are all on a journey, sharing it with whomever makes us feel safe, happy, and loved is the truest of blessings. Perhaps this is why we name our silver companions.
Thank you for the great profile. And thank you Frances.
We’d seen the Two Brides photo but had no idea the image was a Di Bona work. Same-sex weddings are routine for us, and as newbies, we missed the Airstream Addicts history there. Now, we are educated!
Superior blog…..you have Frank nailed down perfectly…!!!
Wow! No wonder this blog took ten minutes to download!
What a creative guy!