When I started trying to promote my own artwork online I kept coming across other people's art that amazed or compelled me in one way or another. This blog has been a way for me to practice thinking and writing about art, as well as learning more about my peers and all the incredible art that is being made out there.

Search for an Artist on this blog (or cut and paste from the list at the bottom of this page)

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Maggie Evans

Forgotten Conversations, 35” x 60”, charcoal on paper, 2009
Difficult Decision, 25” x 36”, pastel on paper, 2009

Hesitation, 18” x 13”, pastel on paper, 2010

Vulnerable Position, 18” x 34”, pastel on paper, 2010

Anticipation, 30” x 36”, pastel on paper, 2010
Maggie Evans creates complex psychological spaces simply by arranging chairs and tables in particularly defined interior spaces. Ok, maybe it's not quite that simple. Much of the psychological evocation comes from the ghostly quality of her technique, using pastels on stretched paper. Nonetheless, there is something remarkable about her ability to use the same very basic elements over and over, and create such a variety of subtly nuanced social scenarios. All without figures or faces. Some of her earlier work depicting bar scenes did include figures. But it seems that the figures faded over time until they eventually vanished altogether. Against expectation this allowed for a richer psychological atmosphere to occupy the images. Instead of specific individuals experiencing a specific situations she used the remaining furniture as symbolic stand-ins for any manner of individuals, allowing the mere position and proximity of them to indicate the potential for tension. The work is about this psycho-social potential instead of mere portrayal and interpretation. You can see more of her work including those bar scenes on her website: www.maggieevansart.com

I saw her work in the latest issue of New american Paintings (issue 94 - southern region). Congratulations Maggie.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Lee White

Midnight ride
Arctic Fox



They Came By Air
untitled figure study

Lee White is primarily an illustrator of children's books. We could only wish for the children that more picture books displayed his level of artistry (I readily acknowledge that there are a lot of absolutely astounding artists working in this field, but as a father and an artist I can confidently claim that they do not make up the majority of published material). He does his own work as well, as you can see from some of the examples above. No artist worthy of the name can do otherwise and stay sane. But his style and interests lend themselves wonderfully to his chosen profession. What I find most appealing is his ability to evoke quite particular moods through light and atmosphere with a deft gestural style and careful color choices. It brings a very real kind of life to his often poignant fantasies. You can see much more on his website, www.leewhiteillustration.com and on his blog.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Frank Gonzales

"Passing Thru"  24" x24"  acrylic on canvas

"Kingfisher"  18" x 18"  acrylic on canvas

"Sharp 1"  12" x 12"  acrylic on canvas

"Gila Woodpecker" 18" x 18"  acrylic on canvas
"Sharpiehawk"  36" x 36"  acrylic on canvas

Frank Gonzales combines a naturalist's love for wildlife with a strong sense of decorative and graphic design and the confident skills of a practiced painter. It all comes together very nicely. It is possible for this type of image making to fall into the category of mere decorative poster art, the kind that lines the walls of mid-range hotels. Gonzales rises above this not only by his skill but also by his exploration of the nuances of color and paint. His approach to painting the birds in a manner reminiscent of pixelation does not feel as gimmicky as it might in less able hands. Instead we get a clear look at how the artists selects a hue and then blocks in the subject stroke by stroke. By purposely misplacing occasional brush strokes we can focus in on the intentionality of how the marks build up the image. The results remind us that pattern is at the heart of everything we see. Patterns may not be the true nature of the everything we see, but it is the true nature of how we see.
To look at more work go to his website: http://www.frankgonzales.net/
Thanks to the folks at http://www.booooooom.com/

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Greg Sand

3.3" x 5.25"

Family Reunion.
3.75" x 3.75"

Family Portrait.
3.3" x 4.9"

3.75" x 3.75

Sitting Portrait.
3.3" x 5.25"

Photo Booth
8" x 1.6"
I don't often post photography. For one I don't think I'm a particularly good judge of it, and I happen to know too many photographers. But these images leapt out at me from the pages of River Styx literary magazine (issue 85). Since I'm so late with this post I decided not to hesitate but simply bring you these haunting narratives that explore issues of perception, reality and yes, death. I will not say any more except that you can see more work both similar and quite different at http://www.behance.net/Greg_Sand

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Alexey Adonin

"Frozen In Time"  oil on canvas  80x80cm  2011
"Afflatus"  oil on canvas  80x80cm  2010

"Dream Symphony"  oil on canvas  80x80cm  2011
"The Red Planet"  oil on canvas  50x60cm  2008
One of my rare abstract entries is by an artist originally from Belarus and now residing in Jerusalem. There's a resemblance to abstract science fiction illustrations from the 1960s (like Robert Powers) that immediately appealed to me. I do not think the similarity can be accidental as there is a distinct homage to science fiction in some of his work as in "The Red Planet" above. While the images are essentially abstract and are, according to the artist, created without any preconception there is always a strong hint of figuration or more commonly landscape. He builds up layers using a variety of techniques with large windows in each, so that the final images is a kind of collage of textures. You can see more of his work on his Flickr page and also on Bluecanvas.com

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Aron Wiesenfeld - 2

"The Wedding Party" oil on canvas  70" x 95"

"The Crown"  oil on canvas  23" x 19"

"The Night"  oil on canvas  19.5" x 30"

"The Well"  oil on canvas  64" x 87"
"Drain Pipe"  charcoal on paper  14" x 10"
I just received an email from Aron Wiesenfeld with a link to a preview of his show opening this weekend at Arcadia Galley in NYC (you can see the preview here). I don't know that I have a whole lot to add to what I said before about his work (see my previous post back in Dec. 2009) but I'll try.
I'm a tremendous fan of his ability to create haunting atmospheres, compelling characters and intriguing narratives. These are stories. They draw us in compelling us to participate in the creative act, demanding that we ponder what led up to, or will follow the events depicted. They are mysteries. Not mysteries to be solved but to be savored. They do not address real life, but rather how life sometimes feels. Emotions are heightened. And one of the most powerful is that unnameable sense of being different, unique, alone; a feeling that can be full of both dignity and despair. Trapped in the uniqueness of our own experience it is a wonder that we can communicate at all. That even this sensation can be conveyed is something of a small miracle.
You can see more of his work on his website (aronwiesenfeld.com) or on his flickr page.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

George Boorujy

And the Plains Opened Up Before Us, ink on paper, 43" x 85", 2009

And the Plains Opened Up Before Us (detail)

Glacier, ink on paper, 38"X50", 2008

Glacier (detail)

Settlement 4 (dammed water), ink on paper, 49"X92", 2007

Settlement 4 (dammed water) (detail)

Ring-billed Gull , ink on paper, 30"X44", 2007

I had to include more than the usual number of images because the details are so important. Surprise often lurks in the details. While the pieces I've selected here are mostly landscapes, much of his work is of animals reflecting an early interest in biology that has stuck faithfully with him. Clearly the natural world is at the center of his interests. Although, as he might point out, what other world is there? Man's role in it is portrayed as a more tenuous thing than one might think looking out from your front windshield on the way to work. But perhaps he's right about that after all. Our grand civilization hasn't been here all that long and may not last all that long either. Who knows? What we can be certain of is that the natural world isn't going anywhere. It is tenacious and full of surprises and Mr. Boorujy revels in that. His depiction of it, and our place in it, is imbued with both a stark solemnity and a wry sense of humor. It is these contradicting implications that beg the viewer to look longer and ponder. Of course the detail doesn't hurt. Most people love to pore over exquisitely rendered realism. So feast your eyes on more of his work at www.georgeboorujy.com.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Susan Bennerstrom

"Gage"  32" x 48"  2009

"Spiral no. 1"  32" x 48"  2008


"Hotel Boss"  47" x 53"  2010
"Ebey"  18" x 26.75"  2010

"Rise"  40" x 48"  2010

 Susan Bennerstrom's art employs realism but ultimately has another objective. The artist works from photos but the photos are merely a starting place for spatial abstraction. She simplifies the forms, removes extraneous detail and carefully models the lighting to create the illusion of complex geometric spaces. There's plenty of references left to identify the location. It's a fine tuned reminder that abstraction and representation are more closely related than most people think. She began her career working exclusively in pastels, both chalk and oil. But in 2008 she switched to oil paints and has worked in this media consistently ever since. The pastels lent her earlier work an atmospheric quality which was appropriate as she concentrated more on light, depicting landscapes as well as buildings and interiors. But her gradual focus on these these interior architectural forms has made the switch an appropriate one. The light in her work is still a prominent feature, but it is subservient to the forms themselves, helping to carve them out with sculptural precision. The brushwork lends the whole a tremendous sense of solidity.

Though the essence of these paintings is one of stillness, the dynamic of narrative is nonetheless powerfully present. For narrative is such a deeply human instinct that the lit stage, even without the actors can be as compelling as any play. and the promise of a story as powerful as story itself. Her quiet sets seem saturated with possibilities and perhaps, even a little mystery.

You can see much more of her work on her website: www.susanbennerstrom.com