Graydon Parrish
American, born 1970

Graydon Parrish’s paintings blend classicism and contemporary realism to create surrealistic portraiture. “Only through the most arduous study can one create art,” he says. “Each picture I paint is based on thorough research in the science of light, form, and technique as well as the study of the old masters and their history.” An obsessive fascination with oil painting and the mastery of craft guides Parrish’s practice; he works in the tradition of the studies conducted by Renaissance masters such as Leonardo da Vinci and Raphael. For his commissioned “The Cycle of Terror and Tragedy: September 11th” (2001-2006), Parrish painted nude children holding model airplanes, some of the portraits as large as 8-by-18 feet. For Parrish, the series was a commentary on human blindness in the wake of tragic events and the “endless cycle of human frailty.”

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