Finding Common Ground In Goal and On Canvas – #habsrangers #becauseitsthecup


About four years ago, through my early days on Twitter, I was contacted by a NYC artist by the name of BORBAY. He asked to interview me for his BLOG and I obliged. We found common ground in our passion for not just art, but also design and marketing. Over the past four years I have kept this artist on my radar and through BORBAY, I was introduced to the art of Ari Lankin.

Like me, Lankin is not only a painter and collaborates in a wide variety of media with individuals and brands, most notably collaborations with Adidas, Burt’s Bees and artist Tino Sehgal during his solo show at the Guggenheim. Lankin’s eclectic oeuvre includes abstract expressionism, conceptual work, painting from observation and plein aire landscapes.

Although his saturated sensual abstracts and perky landscapes are my personal favorite, I find myself drawn to the translucent neon lime skies, dynamic visual elements and detail in his hockey piece titled, ‘The Crown Keeper’ a painting inspired by the great New York Rangers goalie, Lundqvist. As the Rangers and the Habs faced off yesterday in the Eastern Conference final in the quest for Lord Stanley’s cup, I felt his painting of Lundqvist and my piece celebrating Carey Price and the Habs goaltending legacy deserved a spotlight of their own, together.

The Crown Keeper - Ari Lankin

The Crown Keeper – Ari Lankin

I find interesting common elements in both these pieces. We both employ the use of dynamic visual elements through design and a vivid and saturated colour palette. We both reference art history and remove the player from the game isolating them in their own world, their own consciousness heightening the emotion of the piece. In some instances I see influences of George Condo and Gaugin in Lankin’s work. It is a very engaging and timely piece and after watching the Rangers massacre my Habs in the first game, Lundqvist could keep his crown and sip from Lord Stanley’s cup with the Rangers once again.


May the better team move-on.

An interesting aside about the Habs and NYC; According to, the first man to refer to the team as “the Habs” was Tex Rickard, owner of Madison Square Garden (represented in Lankin’s painting), in 1924. Rickard apparently told a reporter that the “H” on the Canadiens’ sweaters was for “Habitants.” Not true. The distinctive C-wrapped-around-H logo stands for “Club de Hockey Canadien.”

You can view the creation process of Lankin’s piece here. Lankin has been a huge hockey fan as long as he can remember. Lankin lives in Manhattan where he has had his studio in East Harlem for the past seven years.

Contact him directly to commission a painting. More on his website here.

Me and my team believe Lankin is one to watch and we look forward to following his rise.