ENCINITAS — A reception celebrating the opening of, “Visual Insanity — Together Again for the First Time, Bob Hord & Dave Pike” will be held from 2 to 4 p.m. Sept. 1 at the Encinitas Library.
The exhibit represents the next and, perhaps, riskiest chapter of two long and distinguished careers.
Hord started working for Hallmark in the 1960s, after graduating from art school, and went on to create illustrations that have appeared in greeting cards, children’s books, advertising and sportswear designs for Disney, Mattel, Quiksilver and the U.S. Olympic Committee. His paintings and sculptures have been exhibited in galleries throughout the United States.
“I have done commercial art all my life where I always have to please someone,” he explained. “That’s why I like this show.”
David Pike is a world-renowned jazz vibraphone and marimba player who appeared on albums for Herbie Mann as well as Bill Evans, Nick Brignola, Paul Bley and Kenny Clarke. His body of work recorded in Europe is regarded as some of the most original jazz of the period, incorporating influences from bebop, jazz, soul jazz, psychedelia, avant-garde music and world music.
Hord and Pike eventually found their way to North County, and forged a friendship that began a decade ago through the 101 Artists Colony in Encinitas.
“Bob was in a corner, humbly doing dangerously imaginative things,” Pike recalled. “He has an incredible imagination, using multiple materials combined with real things which he applies into his art. It’s scary to know that someone is more imaginative than me.”
Pike explained that he had been doing cartooning and sculpture since he was a kid, and got more devoted to art after retiring from his music career a few years ago.
“Jazz is improvisational, and you make beautiful things for the ears,” he said. “But unless you record, it goes into the ether. Painting doesn’t go into the ether. You can touch it, and people can feel it.
He added, “The bebop, the improvisational quality of music in me, is channeled into ‘visual insanity.’”
For the last few years