Please join HCCC in the Main Gallery to watch Ira Coyne and Forrest Wozniak create original signs for For Hire: Contemporary Sign Painting in America during public hours!
November 1 -4, 10 AM – 5 PM
November 5, 12 – 5 PM
November 8 – 11, 10 AM – 5 PM
November 12, 12 – 5 PM
Ira Coyne started painting at the age of five, when he won a gallon of house paint in a school raffle. After promptly painting his secret hide-out fort by the rail line, as well as his BMX tires (so he would look cool with trendy white tread), he moved onto the interior walls of his home; the exterior walls of his home; skateboard ramps; murals in his mother’s classrooms, where she taught art; and the parking lot of his own high school. He eventually took up professional sign and mural painting. Coyne is partially self-taught, having gained experience as an apprentice and foreman to the fabled Vince Ryland, also of Olympia, Washington. Together, the two curate a main-street aesthetic for a population of 51,202 citizens. Coyne is the recipient of the 2014 Historical Preservation Award.
Forrest Wozniak grew up in South Minneapolis and is now based in the twin cities in Minneapolis, where he lives with his wife and two daughters. He has been painting signs since 2002. He first started painting while traveling on the road with the helpful influence of Sean Barton, Ira Coyne, Japhy Witte, and Sven Lynch. Wozniak has a background in construction, carpentry, and masonry, with no college degree. He gained traditional sign-painting skills while studying under and working with Phil Vandervaart, a pioneer in the sign-painting industry. His daughters, ages 8 and 10, wrote him a small bio, which reads as follows: “Our dad is a sign painter. He paints a good block letter, a decent cursive, and an OK number. He should retire and become a bus driver.”