341 Sutter St.
San Francisco, CA 94108
Within the elastic space between figuration and abstraction, San Francisco painter Siddharth Parasnis creates work that balances a sense of physical place with pure color and form. In his recent paintings, he continues to mine the intersection of art, manmade structures, and landscape, filtering reality through his imagination and unconscious, layering shapes and building up regions of luminous color, from turquoise to coral to brick-red. His compositions, infused with light but often spiked with sharp angles, convey complex emotions even as they outwardly depict calm scenes, such as boats on a seashore. It is telling that the artists Parasnis cites as influences—Willem de Kooning, Dennis Hopper, Nathan Oliveira, Richard Diebenkorn—are those he admires for the quality of expression in their art: Hopper for his ambiance; de Kooning for his expressive marks; Oliveira and Diebenkorn for their “spirituality and color.”
Each of Parasnis’s paintings possesses a unique color harmony that the artist captures in a single session, though he may continue to work on the painting for months or years afterward. He calls this capturing “the soul of the painting”; the act that gives the painting “life” or “birth.” Each painting’s structure, too, tends to arise organically, with forms based on places from the artist’s life and travels assuming new relationships and energy as he translates them into paint. Parasnis spent his childhood in India; alongside Hopper, de Kooning, Diebenkorn, and Oliveira, his influences range from pre-modern Indian miniature painting, in which artists conveyed depth through stacked imagery rather than through three-point perspective, to Mark Rothko’s color field paintings. Yet as curator Dieter Tremp has noted, Parasnis’s style is all his own—“full of independent life, in a balance of sensuality and structure unlike anything else we’ve seen so far.”
Born in Pune, India, Parasnis has lived and worked in San Francisco since arriving in 2001 to pursue his MFA. His paintings have been shown at numerous venues in the U.S., Europe, and India, including museum exhibitions at the Crocker Art Museum in Sacramento and the Bakersfield Art Museum, where his work was exhibited alongside that of Oliveira, Diebenkorn, Elmer Bischoff, Joan Brown, Theophilus Brown, and other renowned Bay Area artists. Parasnis is the recipient of a 2102–13 Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant, with his work reviewed in publications including The Huffington Post, Art Ltd., and American Art Collector. His public and corporate collections include Dell Computers, the Galesburg Civic Art Center in Illinois, and the South Central Zone Cultural Center in Nagpur, India.