A Few Questions with Kathleen Weber

Kathleen Weber, "Tavern In Olneyville," 24 X 30 inches, oil on canvas

Kathleen Weber, “Tavern In Olneyville,” 24 X 30 inches, oil on canvas

Kathleen Weber will be showing new landscape and genre paintings at FAN Gallery in June. Her paintings depict everyday life in saturated color.
What is your first creative memory?
 My first creative memory is having a fist full of crayons, drawing a sailboat on some scrap paper my mother had. She ooh’d and ahh’d- big mistake! And I ended up becoming an artist instead of a doctor.
Kathleen Weber "Coco Pazzo," 20 x 20 inches, oil on canvas

Kathleen Weber “Coco Pazzo,” 20 x 20 inches, oil on canvas

How has your painting practice or style grown or changed in the last year or two?
In the last couple of years I’ve been doing a lot more portraits. After reading about Anders Zorn and his limited palette- black, white, yellow ochre, and cad red light- I spent a lot of time using just those colors to see what I could make them do. You can get an incredible range of skin and hair color, and I’ve ended up teaching portrait classes where the first class is spent just doing a color chart so that everyone can see the range it is possible to achieve with such a limited palette. I’ve added other colors now when I do portraits- I love burnt sienna and I really missed blue! But that basic palette remains.
Kathleen Weber, "Windows," 18 x18 inches, oil on canvas

Kathleen Weber, “Windows,” 18 x18 inches, oil on canvas

What is the most challenging part of painting figures?
Some years ago I was in a gallery where I had some work and a woman told me that she never bought paintings with people in them. When I mentioned this to a friend who has bought a lot of my work, he said, “what, she wouldn’t want the Mona Lisa, or Nighthawks?” 

I actually think that the most challenging part of painting figures is creating the atmosphere around them. Of course you want to be able to draw them well, but with enough practice that’s achievable. They can teach that in art school. What they can’t teach is, what’s inside you that’s different from the next painter? What do you paint when you stop imitating painters you admire? That’s something you can only figure out by spending a lot of time in front of your easel. I’m still working on that.

Do you have a creative habit? How do you shape your art making practice to nurture your work?

Now that the good weather is here again, I hope to get outside and paint landscapes for a change, because although I do a lot of work from photos, I actually prefer working from life. I try to get some of the energy of plein air in my studio work.

Kathleen Weber, "Yellow House," 20 X 24 inches, oil on canvas

Kathleen Weber, “Yellow House,” 20 X 24 inches, oil on canvas

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Carlo Russo wins Purchase Prize at ARC

Carlo Russo, Dreams of Ophila, oil on linen

Carlo Russo, Dreams of Ophila,  29 x 22 inches, oil on linen

 

We just found out some good news from one of our artists, Carlo Russo. His painting, “Dreams of Ophelia” won a purchase prize awards at the 2013 Art Renewal Center Salon, as well as winning 3rd place in figurative category. Carlo’s  painting “the blue dress” was a still life finalist too.

Carlo Russo, Blue Dress, oil on linen

Carlo Russo, Blue Dress, oil on linen

Congratulations to Carlo Russo!

 

 

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May 2, 2013 · 10:55 pm

Interview with Serge Zhukov

Serge Zhukov, "Drawing Lesson 3.," 36 X 24 inches, Oil On Canvas

Serge Zhukov, “Drawing Lesson 3.,” 36 X 24 inches, Oil On Canvas

F.A.N. Gallery will show the work of Serge Zhokov this month. Serge is a wonderful painter and a master at creating mood through is landscapes and figures.

Victoria Donohoe of The Inquirer said, “his figure drawings give us an easy sense of his subjects’ reality, but it’s the delicate mix of senses and substance that imbues the oils with an air of uncontrived refinement, while their milky hues set the spirit that appeals to the sophisticated eye.”

Serge Zhukov Harmony in Red 12 X 24 oil on canvas

Serge Zhukov, “Harmony In Red,” 12 X 24 inches, Oil On Canvas

I was able to ask Serge a few questions about his influences and how he works.

Who are your influences? Favorite artists or books or music.

My influences, naturally, are constantly changing throughout my life. At one point in time, I skipped through pages in Art History books, which were devoted to Giotto and De Chirico. Now they are my favorite artists. I am certainly influenced by Piero della Francesca, Giorgione. I can examine works like “Legend of the True Cross” or “Pastoral Concert” for hours. I like Balthus, mostly his late works. In literature, it’s Stanislaw Lem, Hesse, Sasha Sokolov, Osip Mandelstam.

Serge Zhukov Still Life with Glass Pitcher 12 X 24 oil on canvas

Serge Zhukov “Still Life With Glass Pitcher,” 12 X 24 inches, Oil On Canvas

How much planning and preparation go into your paintings, do you do a lot of drawing first and then move onto the painting?

It’s difficult to say. If, I have a clear idea about my next project, then painting goes smoothly. However, I have to envision the entire image in my mind first, prior to drawing. I do a lot of drawings. Often my vision is altered when I actually start painting. It happened with “Drawing Lesson 1” where my original idea changed after creating several drawings.

Serge Zhukov,, sketch of

Serge Zhukov, sketch of “Drawing lesson” 11×14 ink on paper.

What is your first creative memory?

I mixed toothpaste with watercolor paints and colored a window glass. I was 5 years old.

Serge Zhukov, "Evening Shadow," 48 X 36 inches, Oil On Canvas

Serge Zhukov, “Evening Shadow,” 48 X 36 inches, Oil On Canvas

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Gregory Prestegord at F.A.N. Gallery | Public Walls

Thanks Public Walls for the great review.

Gregory Prestegord at F.A.N. Gallery | Public Walls.

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Singular approaches to collecting fine art in Philly — NewsWorks

We always say collect the work you love. When a work speaks to you it is time for it to become yours.

Singular approaches to collecting fine art in Philly — NewsWorks.

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Interview with David Bottini

David Bottini, May Meadow Breeze, 30 x 40 inches, acrylic on canvas

David Bottini, May Meadow Breeze, 30 x 40 inches, acrylic on canvas

David Bottini will be showing his large landscape paintings at the gallery for the month of March. I feel like David’s paintings are a preview of spring and summer as we fill the gallery with his light infused landscapes.

KM: What is your first creative memory?

DB: It is toddler pre-memory, but my parents describe a naptime where I apparently woke-up and stood in my crib tearing off a wall collage that my mother had made – they discovered my “revision” when they checked-in on my nap … maybe I was exerting an emerging aesthetic?

I also remember loving crayons and paper – I am the youngest child, so I recall having crayons and piles of tractor-feed computer paper (my father was a computer programmer in the sixties) that I remember loving to fill with doodles and images. I spent considerable time with my grandfather (he lived with us) – so I always enjoyed the wanders into the woods and time spent in the garden with him … perhaps the seeds of my love of nature were established in those early years.

David Bottini, Summer Leaves, 24 x 12 inches, acrylic on canvas

David Bottini, Summer Leaves, 24 x 12 inches, acrylic on canvas

KM:How long have you been painting?

DB: I had my first formal classes at 10 … worked at my art throughout high school. Really focused and engaged in the process during college and graduate school. So … 40 plus years of working to make paintings … perhaps the past 20 where I sense I am becoming a painter.

KM:Why do you paint?

DB: The reason has changed over the past 30 plus years. I originally painted because it allowed me to engage a fascination with paint, design, and color. As the years passed, and my technical prowess became more intuitive, I have come to see painting as the primary way I can share an articulate experience of the peace and contemplative solace that I find within nature.  Painting is now (excuse my cliché) a lifestyle … I  cannot imagine not working in the studio, and viewing my life experience through a painter’s eye. I sense that my reasons for painting will continue to evolve as I mature physically and creatively.

KM: Do you already have an image in your mind prior to painting or does it develop as you get started?

DB: Not a specific image so much as a sense of light, and the “feel” of a place. As I work from sketches and many photos for reference, I build a painting that conveys the experience I recall from that place.

x David Bottini, March Snow, 40 x 40 inches, acrylic on canvas

David Bottini, March Snow, 40 x 40 inches, acrylic on canvas

KM: Can you tell me a little about your studio practice?

DB: I work in a traditional process that begins in direct experience. I take walks or go out for hikes 3 to 5 times each week. There are always places that attract me – I am drawn to a sense of both enclosure/embrace and some path that is implied or physical that leads outside of the area of embrace.
I generally take many (typically 45- 70 images) from any given location as reference. I will usually return for some very loose sketches.
In the studio, I generally begin with loose paint sketches on paper and then, if the subject/place engages my design interest I will move to a canvas study. I often work a 5 x 7 up to 11 x 14 inch range as my first iteration. If my interest is piqued, I return to a larger (and always revised) larger scale iteration. It is not unusual for my work building a larger canvas to involve weeks of engagement as I build 30 to 40 layers of glazes.

I see a similarity between developing a friendship and building a painting, if the subject is nourishing and continues to engage my art and design interest, I will pursue and maintain a dialogue with the subject. There are places that feel almost archetypal and have had me returning to the visual theme for years of paintings.

David Bottini, Sparkling Summer Morning,  24 x 36 inches, acrylic on canvas

David Bottini, Sparkling Summer Morning, 24 x 36 inches, acrylic on canvas

KM: What artists do you admire?

DB: I have a wide range of artists who inspire and instruct my work in the studio. I love Andrew Wyeth’s rich low-key palette and evocative handling of a familiar Pennsylvania landscape. I continue to be moved by Mark Rothko’s luminous color and still compositional space. I am awed by the luxury and vibrant energy of Maxfield Parrish’s compositional clarity and saturated palette. Corot pulls me into his deep environmental space and carries my eye through his composition with rhythmic brushstrokes and his use of a dark and subdued palette. The American Luminists and 20th Century graphic design represent bodies of work that offer me endless hours of visual study and inspiration. There are many others – including work done over the years by my students, who often make marks that are fresh, raw, and without analytical baggage.

David Bottini, Autumn Arrives 20 x 16 inches, acrylic on canvas

David Bottini, Autumn Arrives 20 x 16 inches, acrylic on canvas

KM: What do you do fun or to recharge yourself?

DB: I enjoy taking long walks and hikes into the woods whenever possible. I also enjoy any reason to take a train trip as well as reading food columns to find a bartender using small batch liquors and creative cocktail recipes. Eating small plates at wonderful bars is one of my favorite luxuries.

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David Bottini: New Paintings

David Bottini, May Meadow Breeze, 30 x 40 inches, acryilc on canvas

David Bottini, May Meadow Breeze, 30 x 40 inches, acrylic on canvas

New Paintings by David Bottini opens Friday, March 1, 2013

March 1 – 30, 2013

First Friday Opening Reception March 1, 5-9 PM

David Bottini’s realist landscapes explore light and atmosphere. His approach begins in direct observation and is enhanced and developed in the studio using a traditional glazing approach. His work draws from training in classical realism as well as his passion for a post-modern abstract sensibility in composing a viewpoint.

 

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