THE ART OF TENNESSEE LOVELESS: 10 X 10 X 10—The Mickey Mouse Contemporary Pop Art Series


By David A. Bossert




The Art of Tennessee Loveless: 10 X 10 X 10—The Mickey Mouse Contemporary Pop Art Series explores the fascinating world of Tennessee Loveless, a Chicago based contemporary pop artist and his series of Mickey Mouse paintings. He uses bold colors and patterns to evoke an immediate visual impact to the viewer, but also creates a poetic irony when one considers the fact that Loveless has limited achromatopsia colorblindness (almost complete colorblind). Despite many obstacles throughout his personal and professional life he has persevered in pursuing his career as an artist. He is driven by his passion for painting people and iconic fictional characters in a way that strikes an emotional and nostalgic connection through the power of the one thing he is blind to—color.


When asked if the colorblindness helped or hindered his life as an artist, Tennessee responded; “Colorblindness never really hindered me throughout my life until I decided to study studio painting in college. I don’t think I took into account that I would actually have to really understand color to receive an acceptable grade for painting something to its exact representation. My choices of color were always based on 1) the colors I could see and 2) the colors that I felt were most appropriate. My compositions would come out in bright neon colors that were considered too blinding to be realistic; when in all actuality through my eyes were quite normal. In the end I was told that I had a decent form, but that my color choices were obnoxious and loud, and that my art couldn’t be commercially successful based on the judgment that my colors were ‘eye searing’. I took up fashion sketching instead and graduated in fashion design with a double major in business/marketing.”


Tennessee’s inability to distinguish most hues has never swayed him from creating art. If anything, his disconnect from this in his early years made him obsessed with the forming of patterns, objects and shapes. He became attracted to the destruction of white space and became captivated with the idea of filling anything lacking in form with pattern. Later in life, he began attaching color to his subjects as he learned in color theory books which hues complimented or contrasted each other appropriately.


This book will explore the series of Mickey Mouse paintings that make up the 10 X 10 X 10 series including the Stay Calm and Dream On grouping that showcases the iconic cultural references of the UK and how “Keep Calm and Carry On” was an influential part of British society. This also ties these pieces into an overall global message to everyone no matter where they live. The series includes The Distance Between Two Points; Mondrian Mickey; Wake Up and Smell the Sound of Coffee; and Sactown Heart which is about Sacramento and how Disney is intertwined with this fantastic city.


The Art of Tennessee Loveless: 10 X 10 X 10—The Mickey Mouse Contemporary Pop Art Series is an art book that will delight young and old alike on the many variations of Mickey Mouse in this colorful and wonderful collection of art. It is a story of art, overcoming obstacles, and following your dreams. Releasing in the fall of 2017.



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