Big Chief Bo Dollis: Portrait of an Enduring Legacy
By Randy "Frenchy" Frechette
We started work on our portrait of Theodore Emile "Bo" Dollis in August 2014. By January 20th, 2015, the piece that Randy (Frenchy) Frechette finished more than a month ago became a memorial to this 71-year young great of the “new” generation of Indian Chiefs. These men eschewed the violence of the old Indian gangs, embracing instead competitive costuming & chanting. They rejected a culture of pain and advanced an enduring art that burst out beyond the confines of Central City New Orleans with the 45rpm single “Handa Wanda” in 1970, the same year he appeared at the 1st New Orleans Jazz Festival. In 1974 he released the pioneering album, “The Wild Magnolias,” fronting an all-star lineup put together with the help of Festival Producer Quint Davis that included Bo’s wife, Laurita.
Randy (Frenchy) Frechette may seem an unlikely choice to wrestle a legend onto the silk-screened page. But this son of a pro boxer punches way above his weight class. Frechette moved to New Orleans in 1997 to paint the local music scene. Shortly thereafter he fell in thrall of the Indians. He met Bo at Second and Dryades on his inaugural Mardi Gras in New Orleans and knew he was home. Frechette rose to fame painting live; turning solitary painting into public performance well before performance art was embraced.
In Frechette, art4now saw the same restless creative spirit that pushed Bo to sneak out, costume and parade against his parents’ better judgment way back when. Such forces of nature cannot be contained. They power greatness. We wondered what Frechette would do if given 100 days - instead of 100 minutes - to paint with no audience except art4now’s creative director. We’ll let the art speak for itself. The hue, color depth and saturation of the feathering depicted in the poster is a singularly powerful visual experience that could only be rendered in silk-screen. It’s magic: Inspired by the soul of the greatness Bo Dollis embodied and the photographs of Michael P. Smith housed at The Historic New Orleans Collection.
And in a fine art exclusive, we’re introducing the first silk-screen print available in 3D. We employ a proprietary spread spectrum technology that adds stunning dimension when viewed with the included glasses, yet does not interfere with the art viewed with the unaided eye. A startlingly original innovation that must be seen.
10,000 Numbered prints on archival paper, 22" x 31" - Includes 1 pair of paper glasses
2,500 Artist-signed & numbered prints on 100% rag paper, 23" x 32" - Includes 2 pairs of paper glasses.
750 Artist signed and remarqued with a pencil drawing of 3 magnolias, estate stamped & signed with the inscription “One More Time” by Bo Dollis, Jr. & numbered Remarque prints on 100% rag paper, 24" x 35" - Includes 1 pair of wrap-around plastic glasses and 1 pair of paper glasses.
300 Artist-overpainted and signed by the artist, estate stamped & signed with the inscription “One More Time” by Bo Dollis, Jr. & numbered C-Marque canvas screen prints, 26" x 36" unstretched size - Includes 1 pair of wrap-around plastic glasses and 1 pair of paper glasses.
Poster originally sold for $69 (Unsigned), $239 (Signed), $595 (Re-Marque), $895 (C-Marque)
Poster and specifications may vary slightly.
Image ™ ©2015 New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival Foundation, Inc.
Used by permission. Text ©2015 ProCreations Publishing Company.
Image Inspired by the photographs of Michael P. Smith, copyright The Historic New Orleans Collection.