Sunday Evening Art Gallery — Giuseppe Arcimboldo

Giuseppe Arcimboldo (1527–1593) was an Italian painter best known for creating imaginative portrait heads made entirely of objects such as fruits, vegetables, flowers, fish and books.

He was a conventional court painter of portraits for three Holy Roman Emperors in Vienna and Prague, also producing religious subjects and, among other things, a series of colored drawings of exotic animals in the imperial menagerie.Arcimboldo’s conventional work on traditional religious subjects has fallen into oblivion, but his portraits of human heads made up of vegetables, fruit and tree roots, were greatly admired by his contemporaries and remain a source of fascination today.

Art critics debated whether these paintings were whimsical or the product of a deranged mind, but the  majority of scholars hold to the view that given the Renaissance fascination with riddles, puzzles, and the bizarre, Arcimboldo, far from being mentally imbalanced, catered to the taste of his times.Arcimboldo did not leave written certificates on himself or his artwork.After the deaths of Arcimboldo and his patron, the emperor Rudolph II, the heritage of the artist was quickly forgotten, and many of his works were lost.When the Swedish army invaded Prague in 1648, during the Thirty Years’ War, many of Arcimboldo’s paintings were taken from Rudolf II’s collection.His paintings have been cited as precursors to Surrealism and were highly prized by Salvador Dalí and other members of the movement.

More of Giuseppe Arcimboldo‘s wonderfully strange paintings can be found at https://www.giuseppe-arcimboldo.org/ and https://www.wikiart.org/en/giuseppe-arcimboldo.

 

 

Sunday Evening Art Gallery — John Singer Sargent

John Singer Sargent (January 12, 1856 – April 14, 1925) was the most successful Impressionist painter of his era, as well as a gifted landscape painter and watercolorist.Born in Florence to expatriate American parents,  Sargent received his first formal art instruction at Rome in 1868, and then sporadically attended the Accademia delle Belle Arti in Florence between 1870 and 1873.In 1874 he was accepted at the Paris atelier of the portraitist Emile Auguste Carolus-Duran, and attended drawing classes at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts.Throughout the 1880s, he regularly participated in the Paris Salon — most often, his works were full-length portraits of women, which generally received positively.Sargent’s best portraits expertly reveal the individuality and personality of his sitters.This ability set him apart from others portrait painters of his time—he made the sitter shine on the canvas while capturing the essence of their being.Noted for his dazzling technical virtuosity and painterly technique, he influenced an entire generation of American portraitists. By the turn of the century Sargent was recognized as the most acclaimed international society portraitist of the Edwardian era, and his clientele consisted of the most affluent, aristocratic, and fashionable people of his time.Around 1906 he abandoned portraiture and worked primarily in watercolor, a medium in which he was extraordinarily gifted.More of John Singer Sargent‘s paintings can be found at https://www.johnsingersargent.org/. 

 

Sunday Evening Art Gallery — Matthew Grabelsky

Using the New York City subway system as the setting for his work, Matthew Grabelsky paints surreal portraits of people who are seemingly normal from the neck down, but who have had their heads replaced by animals, both wild and domesticated.Grabelsky graduated Cum Laude from Rice University in 2002 with a BA in Art and Art History,  along with a BS in Astrophysics.Grabelsky’s paintings are inspired by the years he spent riding the subways in New York as a kid and by his early fascination with Greek mythology.Small details including zoo posters, stickers, T-shirts, and toys add humor to the art, while light reflecting off subway tiles and molded sets show the artist’s technical ability to paint hyperrealistic scenes.Grabelsky’s paintings are an exploration of human nature and of the way that animals represent various parts of the human subconscious.“The characters are symbolic of the kinds of thoughts that lie under the surface of people’s minds, and they reveal that the most extraordinary can exist in the most ordinary of everyday settings,” the artist has said.“This theme is communicated through the juxtaposition of these ostensibly irrational images with otherwise completely mundane scenes.

My idea is that my creatures are not original but are ultimately part of a much larger cultural continuum.”

More of Matthew Grabelsky‘s delightful art can be found at https://www.grabelsky.com/.

 

 

 

Sunday Evening Art Gallery — Fernando Botero

 

Fernando Botero ( April 1932) is a Colombian figurative artist and sculptor born in Medellín, Colombia.

The Study of Vermeer

 

His signature style, also known as “Boterismo”, depicts people and figures in large, exaggerated volume, which can represent political criticism or humor, depending on the piece.

Dead Bishops

 

The inflated proportions of his figures are depicted using flat, bright color and prominently outlined forms — a nod to Latin-American folk art.

Marie Antoinette

 

And while his works include still-life and landscapes, Botero has typically concentrated on his emblematic situational portraiture.

Rubens and his Wife

 

For Botero, the volume of his characters allows him to emphasize and highlight certain features, showing the sensuality of form.

 

The Family

 

He loves painting and creating sculptures, especially replicas of famous paintings or celebrities.

Battista-Sorza after Piero Della Francesca

 

He is considered the most recognized and quoted living artist from Latin America, and his art can be found in highly visible places around the world.

The First Lady

 

More of  Fernando Botero’s whimsical art can be found at https://www.wikiart.org/en/fernando-botero.

Sunday Evening Art Gallery — Hans Holbein the Younger

Hans Holbein the Younger (1497-1543) was a German painter, draftsman, and designer, renowned for the precise rendering of his drawings and the compelling realism of his portraits, particularly those recording the court of King Henry VIII of England.

Henry VIII

Holbein the Younger was one of the most celebrated portraitists of the sixteenth century.

Jean De Dinteville and Georges de Selves

At an early age he won commissions to paint portraits of prominent merchants in Basel, and in later years he attracted powerful patrons in England, including Sir Thomas More.

Sir Thomas More

He also produced religious art, satire, and Reformation propaganda, and he made a significant contribution to the history of book design.

Anne of Cleves

Holbein’s art has sometimes been called realist, since he drew and painted with a rare precision.

Edward, Prince of Wales

He was never content with outward appearance, however; he embedded layers of symbolism, allusion, and paradox in his art, to the lasting fascination of scholars.

Jane Seymour

His portraits were renowned in their time for their likeness, and it is through his eyes that many famous figures of his day are pictured today.

Henry VIII

More of Hans Holbein the Younger‘s portraits can be found at https://www.hans-holbein.org/

Sunday Evening Art Gallery — Kelvin Okafor

Kelvin Okafor (born November 1, 1985) is a British artist of Nigerian descent who lives in Tottenham, London.

He draws very lifelike portraits of ordinary people and celebrities using pencil and charcoal.

His style is known as Hyperrealism.

He brings portraits to life, as if they were standing right next to you.  

Ultimately, Okafor intends to create art that prompts an emotional response to viewers.

More of Kelvin Okafor‘s amazing works can be found at www.kelvinokaforart.com.