Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Creative Mischief 2016


My portrait Christophe 3 will be exhibited at the National Academy's annual Creative Mischief event starting tomorrow in NYC:

The 5th Annual Creative Mischief Exhibition
National Academy Museum
1083 Fifth Avenue, New York City
Opening Reception: Wednesday, May 18, 2016, 6:00 – 9:00 pm
Exhibition Dates: May 19-29, 2016
Gallery Hours (for Creative Mischief only):
Monday – Sunday 11 AM – 6 PM

Christophe 3 was a recent addition to my series of larger than life-sized head studies (24 x 30 inches, acrylic on canvas). I started the painting with skin tones but gradually covered it in red, in part because I wanted to try another monochrome like Raven 6, but in a different hue.

I was hoping to achieve vibrance and push-pull dimensionality using only variations on a single color. I used a warm red (orange) against a cool red (pink), with blue-gray shadows to anchor the bright lights. I also kept the brush strokes free and facial features loosely defined in order to preserve the abstract, organic quality of the image.

It's a bit of a riff on Freud and Auerbach but in terms of contemporary portraiture, I was probably thinking of Cian McLoughlin, Edwige Fouvry, and Andrew Salgado.

I enjoyed painting Christophe 3, which ended up decidedly un-classical in technique and spirit. I'm happy that the National Academy chose it for its exhibition.

Here are some progress shots over four 3-hour sessions:

Monday, May 9, 2016

"Light Breeze" by ChiFung Wong

My good friend Matthew (ChiFung) Wong is exhibiting some beautiful flower paintings at Resobox in Queens, NY.

ChiFung's works feature refined botanical designs over gold or silver backgrounds. inspired by Isson Tanaka, a Japanese Nihonga artist from the Shōwa period. If you're in the area, I hope you'll have a chance to see this inspiring blend of modern and traditional Japanese aesthetics.


Light Breeze, Flowers for Fortitude: A Collection by ChiFung Wong
May 2 – June 7, 2016
41-26 27th Street
Long Island City, New York


ChiFung Wong was born in Macau, China and educated in Japan. He received his Ph.D in Fine Art at Kyushu Sangyo University Japan in 2006 and a certificate at National Academy School of Fine Art in 2013. After becoming a graduate research assistant and lecturer at K.S. University, Department of Fine Art, Faculty of Fine Arts in 2003 for 4 years, ChiFung traveled to New York and became a Sumi-E painting lecturer here at Resobox in 2014. He has exhibited his artworks in Japan, the United States, Britain and Australia.

Here's a video from the opening reception:

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Two New Paintings

I recently completed two large paintings, Elliott and Dea 5, both acrylic on canvas, 30 x 30 inches.

In contrast to the loose brushwork of Freddy 3 and Christophe 3, for these new paintings I focused on unbroken lines, sharp edges, and simple color themes.

These works seem a lot less experimental than my previous efforts, but I was trying out some ideas on push-pull spatial effects (Hofmann), optical mixing (Seurat), and synesthesia (Kandinsky). In addition, I've been looking at portraits by Warhol and Alex Katz and thought it might be fun to emulate their bold, in-your-face graphic style.

This process required more premeditation - i.e. nailing the drawing in the first session, rather than letting it emerge organically.through repeated sittings from the model. In some ways I appreciated the lack of indecisiveness, but I also missed the intuitive breakthroughs that can sometimes happen when you're not really sure of what your final image is supposed to look like.

I'm currently working on a new portrait, which can go either hard-edged or less so. Let's see where it takes me.

Friday, March 4, 2016

Twitter Art Exhibit NYC

My small painting "Male Head Study" (watercolor and gouache on paper) will be included in the Twitter Art Exhibit in NYC:

Trygve Lie Gallery
317 East 52nd Street
New York, NY 10022
March 31 to April 21, 2016
Hours: Tuesday-Thursday 11-6, Friday 12-6, Saturday 12-5

The show will feature over 1,000 artists from 35 countries. All postcard-sized artworks are priced at $35 and will benefit the Handmade Program at Foster Pride in New York City. I hope you'll have a chance to drop by and support this worthy cause.

UPDATE: The reception was a great success. Thanks to Tom Alm for acquiring my submission! Here's a photo of his purchases framed on his wall:

I'm also pleased to add these works to my collection.

Daniil Belov (Moscow)

Jerry Shawback (Los Angeles)

Here's a video from the opening night:

The 2017 Twitter Art Exhibit will take place at Stratford-upon-Avon, UK. Details will be announced later this year.

Monday, February 8, 2016

"Gods and Godesses" by Carol Berman

My good friend Carol Berman is having a solo exhibition at the Producer's Club, 358 West 44th Street, New York City.

Carol is a practicing psychiatrist whose paintings explore the unconscious, and mythology in particular. Carol's show was organized by the International Women Artists' Salon and will be on view for the entire month of February.

Here's a preview:

More images here.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

New Photography 4

Here are some new photos on Instagram, featuring fall/winter scenes and urban photography. Like my previous posts (1, 2, and 3) I used my iPhone and the Aviary app for quick touch-ups.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Betty 3

Here's my first painting of the year:

Betty 3
Acrylic on canvas
30 x 30 inches

I did this in two three-hour sessions, about half the time I usually spend on a canvas of this size. But I've decided to stop and not add any glitchy frippery since I think that would obscure her enigmatic gaze and attitude.

We were lucky to have Betty again. She's a compelling model of rare and unusual beauty, previously featured here, and here.