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Artist Crush: Aaron Smith

January 19th, 2011 · 11 Comments

I came across Aaron Smith’s uber-painterly work on thisartisyours. The artist lives in LA and teaches at Art Center.

His mesmerizing series “Bearded Blokes” is such a departure from all of the hyper-realist and illustration-y work we come across these days. I am dumb-struck by the richness of his brushwork and vibrant, irreverent palette. For those in NYC, Smith has a solo show featuring “Bearded Blokes” at Sloan Fine Art coming up in June.

.Want to see more? Aaron’s blog Bearded Blokes of the Belle Epoque features bearded men from all walks of life. The blog’s intro reads:

During the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, men often sported spectacular beards and mustaches and dressed with pride and care. This blog is a celebration of the golden era of the masculine mystique.




And in case you were wondering…

Mr. Smith is a bearded bloke himself.

Artist Crush: Anna Navasardian

August 31st, 2010 · 2 Comments

These paintings by NYC artist Anna Navasardian take my breath away. There is so much soul in her work, in each dramatic brushstroke. It’s true that her paintings are somber and perhaps a bit morose, but they are still utterly beautiful.




Don’t her portraits make you think of Picasso’s Blue Period?

Truck Series by Shane Neufeld

January 11th, 2010 · 2 Comments

Shane Neufeld is a Brooklyn-based artist and architect whose beautiful, painterly Truck Series was inspired by the industrial surroundings of his Gowanus studio. What started out as an exercise, capturing the comings and goings of trucks at the nearby big box parking lot, turned into a large-scale series spanning four years and forty-something paintings.

It might seem an odd choice of subject, especially for someone as strongly rooted in the traditional approach of oil painting, as Neufeld is. In trucks, Neufeld found a more freeing subject that has allowed him to explore the aspects of painting that excite him while being able to leave behind a good deal of the rest. Trucks are easily recognizable while also abstract. As Shane says, “their simplistic form… through a variety of changing perspectives, had the potential to generate a series of complex and varied compositions.”

As an unorthodox subject, trucks are relatively free of cultural associations, and thus allow Shane to convey his message through fundamental ideas of form, light and color. Shane states that trucks “…defy categorization and are not historically charged subjects – i.e. they do not evoke the same traditional cultural responses as that of a landscape or a figurative work. Relatively free of cultural clichés, the distinct quality of the space becomes a theatre for light and shadow, composition and geometry.”

Every artist struggles with the intended and unintended implications of the subjects they choose. Shane successfully tackles this issue by choosing a subject that is entirely ordinary yet modern and fresh in the context of painting.

Several paintings are currently available through the artist.