Capturing an artist’s worldview.
As Americans, we often take for granted our privileged opportunity to live in a country shaped by a beautiful blend of cultures and backgrounds affecting every area of our daily lives. Nowhere is it more evident than in our art—where you get to glimpse intimately into an artist’s varied life experiences and worldviews. Here in Park City, our scope of art is amazing and diverse in so many ways. Not only can you experience a wide range of mediums, methods and incredible talent, many of the artists exhibited have backgrounds and followings from around the globe.
By Laura Jackson
Gallery MAR, Andrzej Skorut
A native of Krakow, Poland, Skorut grew up in a city with a history of more than a thousand years. Its colossal architecture and distinguished art galleries were some of his first artistic teachers, and foreshadowed an early love of painting.
“Drawing from my life experiences in Poland, Utah, and other places I have traveled, my paintings are a union of diverse landscapes and the changing emotions they evoke,” said Skorut. He explains that although his paintings initially appear to be realistic landscapes, they are as abstract as they are representational. Inspired by that duality, he believes in the value of an immediate impact of a painting, yet feels deeper meanings lay just beneath the surface.
Terzain Galleries, Davoud Khosravi
“My work tells stories from my life, places I’ve been, people I’ve met, art, architecture, our environment and culture. These stories are interwoven into the objects I create,” explains Khosravi.
Born in Iran, and now living in Canada, Khosravi has spent years working with a material he describes as “mysterious, alive and transforming.” He sculpts his spectacular wood creations out of a variety of North American woods such as maple, cherry, walnut and oak, along with more exotic woods such as ebony, purpleheart and padauk.
Thomas Anthony Gallery, Nicola De Benedictis
Painting from a studio in his home in northern Italy,
De Benedictis’ favorite subjects are the romantic settings of Italy and France. He often depicts a charming European village complete with rolling hillsides, vineyards, olive or cypress trees and soothing waters.
Using a combination of oils, acrylics, pastels and oil sticks, he achieves an incredible luminosity and energy in his landscapes. His paintings appear to reveal almost mystical places with his entrancing use of warm and harmonious color. All of the atmospheres in his paintings feel deeply personal, and his passion for the places he paints is evident in every brush stroke.
Dancing Hands Gallery, Randy Strong
Collected and exhibited all over the world, including the Louvre in Paris, glass artist Randy Strong has dedicated his career to pushing the limits of hot glass design.
Many of his glass pieces reflect a strong influence from Japan, a country where he has both studied and returned to several times for inspiration. His breathtaking Bonsai bowls, named for the miniature Japanese trees, feature gracefully balanced bases that gently uphold delicately curved bowls. Strong describes these exquisite pieces, “They represent the way life is—nothing is perfect and symmetrical, yet through being unbalanced they have perfect balance.”
Creating Common Bonds
Meyer Gallery, Kaori Takamura
Describing her “American Quilt” series, Takamura explains, “Stitch by stitch Americans have created quilts with all kinds of tangled everyday thoughts embedded in them, and I believe that these thoughts resonate even now in our modern lives and culture.” Her captivating pieces combine acrylic paint on canvas with stitching, scratching, cutout and patched areas sewn together into a large canvas.
Takamura is a native of Tokyo, Japan, but now creates her artwork from Carefree, Arizona. Many of her quilt images are inspired by their roots in African traditions. Part of her fascination with this theme is because many of the symbols once used in African quilts became hidden code language for escape from slavery during our country’s Underground Railroad days. “These images help to evoke feelings reminiscent of an anonymous person’s life story in the work,” said Takamura.
Montgomery Lee Fine Art, Yang Ke Shan
Born in Henan Province, China, Yang’s longstanding passion for painting began in childhood. During his internationally successful career, he has gained impressive recognition within and outside China, and his work is often difficult to acquire in the U.S.
As a true believer in the power of realistic painting, Yang’s works reflect his mission to depict beauty in the most lifelike manner possible. His use of rich color and stunningly accurate details communicate a sense of alluring admiration for his subjects. He often paints a disappearing way of life focusing on the peoples of Northern China and Mongolia. Many of his paintings demonstrate an interesting contrast between the resilient and fragile.
Julie Nester Gallery, Silvia Poloto
Brazilian-born Poloto is known for her expressive abstract paintings, photography and mixed media works. Painting from her studio in San Francisco, she creates intensely passionate pieces full of vibrant color, expressive gesture and rich texture.
Poloto explains that her creative process is highly intuitive as personal symbols continuously emerge within her art. She explains, “The rose for me is both soul and female spirit, a celebration of womanhood.” One of her newest series, “Rosa Louca Dos Ventos”, which means “mad rose of the winds”, was inspired by her own story and “celebrates our shared experience, the human condition and its cycle of death, rebirth and transformation.”
Coda Gallery, Maria Zielinska
Born in the southern Polish city of Wadowice, Zielinska began her studies at the Bielsko-Biala High School of Fine Arts. She later moved to Warsaw and studied at the Polish Academy of Fine Arts.
Her oil paintings are filled with bold and vibrant color concentrating on the interplay of shadow and light. She states that she is attracted to the “clean simplicity” of nature she represents in her paintings. Referring to the strength of nature she believes, “it has sole power to cleanse and sustain the balance of the human psyche.”
District Gallery, Theodore Waddell
An artist with a passionate following in the U.S. as well as abroad, Waddell has been acclaimed for his “reverence for nature and celebration of paint” according to Jennifer Complo, curator of the Eiteljorg Museum.
Much of his landscape work draws an interesting line between abstract art and realism. Using luscious layers of thick paint, his paintings reveal heavily textured surfaces and captivating movement. This past summer, the U.S. State Department’s Art in Embassies Program exhibited the artist’s paintings at the U.S. Embassy in Moscow.
J GO Gallery, Siddharth Parasnis
His first interest in capturing the true spirit of architecture began while painting plein air landscapes in the villages near his hometown of Pune, India. Today, working from his studio in San Francisco, he continues to create unique architectural landscapes with an intriguing balance of bold colors, enticing shapes and geometric patterns.
“I believe in creating my own world with my vision on canvas, and I invite viewers not only to see it and enjoy it, but to enter the canvas and experience being there,” said Parasnis.
Mountain Trails Gallery, Robert Hagan
One of Australia’s most popular artists, Hagan has gained tremendous prestige in the U.S. market as well. His use of soothing color and impressionist style pulls the viewer into his paintings with a sense of enchanting nostalgia that is both refreshing and interesting.
Even with his landscapes that may not actually represent a place you’ve ever been, they seem somehow strangely familiar and possess a certain magnetic charm. Hagan comments on his style, “I believe that most people buy my paintings because I’m painting something that they understand, that they relate to in a general, ordinary way.” He describes his painting process as “weaving together a story line”, as well as a desire to “paint something uplifting and celebratory about life.”
Enjoying the Journey
Silver Queen Gallery, Frank Gonzales
A young artist rapidly gaining recognition from collectors throughout the U.S. and Europe, Frank Gonzales, describes his work as “process oriented”. He explains, “I like to construct and deconstruct during the process leaving traces of my journey in the end results. I find that painting figures, landscapes and birds allow me to cross-pollinate certain elements from one painting to another.”
“What I do is nothing new, but by using the language of color, composition, fragmentation, and representation, my aim is to speak about these known elements and present them from a different perspective,” said Gonzales.
Old Towne Gallery, Joan Miro
One of Spain’s and the world’s most celebrated artists, Miro, is known as an important forefather of modern art. Born in Barcelona in 1893, Miro spent much of his lifetime painting in his native Spain, but also some significant time in Paris. One of his good friends, Ernest Hemingway, purchased one of his most recognized paintings, “The Farm”, in the 1920s.
During his long and successful artistic journey, Miro was known for his experimentation with constantly evolving styles and mediums. Living and painting throughout the majority of the 20th Century, Miro died at 90 in 1983. Just this past June, his painting “Blue Star” brought nearly $37 million at auction at Sotheby’s.
“In a picture, it should be possible to discover new things every time you see it. But you can look at a picture for a week together and never think of it again. You can also look at a picture for a second and think of it all your life.”