photo: jeremy green


Salai Gallery


The Art

Salai Gallery is an on-line gallery dedicated to small original art on paper.  The paintings are small, 11"x14", or less, and are created by using professional design markers and oil, on paper. 

What does "Salai" mean?

The name "Salai" is an homage to Leonardo da Vinci and his mischievous assistant (from 1480 - 1524), Gian Giacomo Caprotti da Oreno, better known as Salaì (Which in Italian means ,"The Devil", lit. "The little unclean one"). Salaì entered Leonardo's household at the age of ten. He created paintings under the name of Andrea Salai. He was described as one of Leonardo's students and lifelong servant and is thought by some to be the model for some of Leonardo's most famous works, including the Mona Lisa.



Lane Rockford Orsak



I began my early creative life in Houston, Texas, performing in theater and later studying liberal arts at Lon Morris College and the University of Texas in Austin. I danced in the Austin Ballet Theater for two seasons and after graduating wrote a musical, “Mr. Hanks”  (one of only six people in the U.S., outside of NYC, to be accepted for audition at the prestigious BMI Lehman Engel Workshop in New York City). In 1989, Frustrated with my life, I moved to Tokyo, Japan and worked for large companies as a Language Consultant, grossly overpaid, to try and prepare corporate managers to work on the global stage.

After three intense years, I returned married to a German-Mexican Coffee heiress and created Santa Elena Coffee Company (the first American company to import coffee, roast and package, directly from a private family plantation to the consumer). After that relationship concluded, I became a marketing guy and in 2000 created a boutique creative advertising agency and marketing firm, Creative Marketing Consultants.

In 2009, I began writing books. First, the “Keiko the Fairy” series: The Kujiki, The Silkroad, and Yonaguni (accepted by Paramount Pictures, animation department, for consideration), an auto-biographical novel, “Clown White,” and recently published an adult comedy, “Barbella.”

Currently, I am living and working in Austin, Texas.


Artist Statement

After, years of professionally art directing and designing for the advertising world—obsessed with Euro recto-linear design and precise messaging—I am intoxicated by the messy, fluid, honesty, and emotion of the new "Black Landscapes."  It feels  audacious to express what actually lives inside me: to express my own unique human experience with freely colliding colors, juxtaposing emotions and lines.  Somewhere in that creative process I feel most alive and present.

The Black Landscapes evolved as a result of two main centrifugal forces. First, from my illustrations that I have drawn for years in journals: They are spontaneous, usually beginning with a male figure, colorful, surreal, and deeply psychological. Normally, after concluding the drawing, I don’t like many parts of the work and want to cover it up…

The genesis began in July of 2016, after my father's death, and I began to cross through the illustrations with thick, black oil paint and created a grid. The entire illustration instantly changed. The more black paint I added, the work was transformed from an illustration into a painting. The work became a kind modern abstract landscape with visible elements of the illustration remaining. It becomes a deeply personal expression in which the spirit of the illustration seems to linger.


Click on the image below, multiple times, to see an example my process: