Saturday, October 6, 2007

Steven Lawler


Steven LaRose said...

did you see that "vision sixty whatever" online portfolio of his that was organized by thinly cropped portions of his paintings that included eyes? very cool. New to my mix thanks!

It may be your job to show me what the Realism Jockeys are doing.

I dig that painter and his path.

Steven LaRose said...

This image flows so nicely.

New York City said...

Yeah, the eyes are cool.
I just came across him yesterday and was really impressed by his composition. It's difficult to find something that feels both inspired by the old masters, but also is clearly contemporary.

I don't think it's just the subject matter that makes his work contemporary, I can see the influence of film.

Steven LaRose said...

I was less impressed re-looking at his paintings this morning.

Something stiff in the flesh. Not that I could do any better mind you. And then I started to see a "sameness" to everything. . . could be a groove, but still, I saw it as a crutch. The models were all too similar and the lighting effects all too calculated and then, I clicked on his links tab and saw that he is into musicians like Arto Part, Steve Reich, and Phillip Glass and I think "aaaaah" repetitive minimalism soundtracks.

Film for sure, possibly even film scores.

I also see a little graphic novel as well. There is that middle ground of Frank Miller neu-noir, inky story-board.

I suppose IRL the brushmarks will tell all.

New York City said...

There is something about the flesh, and all the models look like they're from Chicago. I definately agree about the light. Even in film they use a myriad of different lighting situations which I think he should definitely explore. (Thanks by the way, you just gave me a whole string of ideas on light.)

I can't tell from these images, but sometimes something that looks great in photo can really loose its muscles when you look up close at the paint. I find this especially in the work of photo realists and is all too frequent. Maybe I'm biased as I've actually got some abstraction in my heart - I love the paint surface, how the brush strokes weave together or break down to reveal previous layers. I love broken color and mystery. I guess that's why I love Rembrandt so much. Most often realism comes off too slick and polished.

I hate to put in a disclaimer, however, the opposite can be true as well. Often the paintings look much better in person. I hope this is the case with Lawler, as I enjoy his composition.