A Fine Art Exhibition exploring portrait and figure painting today...
Realism, Impressionism, Abstraction.. what do we use to describe a work that is a combination of the three? How much does a portrait or figurative work need to look like the model or subject these days? Is capturing a “Likeness” as important in today's fine art works as it once was? Is figure and portrait painting anything like it was back in the 1800 and early 1900s? or has the art world finally adopted a liberal view on the importance of "likeness" in a figure painting.
Today in the realist figurative world see a mixture of genres coming together in the same painting, or exhibiting side by side, and its not just in America. Russian artists, Icelandic artists, French artist and more have been influenced, be it by instagram shots of new works they can easily access now, or the rise in international art fairs and exhibitions that are traveling around the globe.
The academically trained teachers, artists, and professionals now feel they are "allowed" to really blur edges, and drip some pigment and pull the brush through their finely rendered paintings. Graphic layout and composition comes into play a lot more in the works we are seeing and having figures that are not "finished" is often more the norm.
"This has of course happened before, that figures in art have been known to be loose and lightly suggested, not realistically painted, and artists without academic training were often creating them. However… recently, our academically trained realist painters are pushing the envelope and adding blurred edges, visible brushwork and bold abstraction in their works, for a few years now. As mentioned in my articles published in 2018, Post war modern and bay area figurative was already experimenting with this, even the Impressionists and the post impressionists before them… the difference is now its done by some of the tightest trained academic realists, the academy trained artists...and the result is simply outstanding. They have created a hybrid style combining design, and abstraction and crisps classical realism. The works still present and hold a trained realist sublime quality as well as a purely creative side with abstract backgrounds and blurred edges that aid to the over “feeling” of the work. ” - Suggests Rothe the curator
"In Russia and the Ukraine there are two types of art schools, ones that focus on Decorative arts, color, and design, and others that are more academic. Some teach kids to know color before all else, others more academically with casts, and values and the often don’t mix the two styles. its encouraging to see that both are being accepted here in America even in the same artwork. “
In this exciting exhibition, we take it a step further as we study the abstracting of the human figure, to ask about the idea of ‘'Likeness'' and weather capturing a personality in a work of art is as important in todays works as it was in the past. Recall when portrait painitng, before photos were all they had and likeness played a very important role, compared to todays more suggestive styles.
The exhibition combines works by many Artists from academic schools such as the Repin Academy of Art St. Petersburg, Laguna Collge of art and Design and the Florence Academy. It also presents works by California Plein Air Figure and Landscape Painters, as well as Ukrainian decorative arts students and painters from various backgrounds and training. Works coming in from Iceland, Russia, New York and California. The paintings will range from small gems and portrait studies to museum quality large scale figures in the landscape as well as historical drawings and paintings from our Russian Collection.
Vanessa Rothe Fine Art and the VRFA artists are proud to be on the forefront of these new genres of art and are proud to present to you "Likeness” Opening January 11th at the VRFA Gallery 418 Ocean ave here in Laguna Beach CA. Exhibition runs thru Feb 28th, 2020.
Participating Artists Include: C.W Mundy, David Gray, Casey Childs, Vincent Xeus, Nick Runge, David Shevlino, Olga Krimon,( Russia) Vadim Suvorov,( Ukraine) Olga Grigoreyva (Russia Ukraine_ Michelle Dunaway, Karen Offut, Thor Grimur Einarson, (Iceland) Nicolas Martin ( France), Aaron Westerberg, Mike Malm, Terry Miura, Sergey Kovalenko (Ukraine), Eric Bowman, Danil Volkov ( Russia) Ray Roberts, Peggi Kroll Roberts, Leon Okun ( Russia) Britton Snyder. Hope Railey, Vanessa Rothe, Elizabeth McGhee, Matt Talbert and William Neukomm from Laguna College of Art and Design. Corneila Hernes ( Norway) and Stephan Bauman from Florence academy.
Drawings and historical works from the St. Petersberg academy and more…You wont want to miss this.