Friday, December 20, 2013

Show me the paintings – Take 2 – Jeremy Lipking

Jeremy Lipking’s show was definitely a “Take 2” at the Arcadia Contemporary Gallery in New York. A near “deja-vu-esque” sensation following the show for Casey Baugh with the revisit of the same gallery, with a portrait and figure artist’s solo work. When I think of Jeremy’s body of work the term rock star wins out as a dead on description of who he is in the world of art today.
I’ve always believed there are rock stars in every field.  As the lyrics, “We all just want to be big rock stars”, by Nickelback suggests, we all want our brand to be like a rock star’s - a household name. Jeremy Lipking has achieved this status in the art world.  And for art lovers and collectors it is our joy to applaud his artistry.

 Lipking’s show was well attended (a packed gallery) and the enthusiastic crowd saw red dots go up quickly. Emily also attended this show and reconnected with many of our favorite artists and friends.  Michelle Dunaway, Kathy Anderson, Gregory Mortensen, Casey Baugh, Rosemary Ladd of the Putney Painters and many more were there to support Jeremy and see the body of work he produced this past year.
Danielle and Jeremy Lipking, with Emily Dietrich and Michelle Dunaway
 The paintings were sensitive, beautifully rendered and drew you in to the story that belied their two dimensional surface.  I would be hard pressed to pick a favorite but was drawn to Jeremy’s self portrait as Anders Zorn, a hero to many.  Unable to attend, I viewed his paintings online and felt a special thrill to have witnessed Jeremy’s development.  I still have the American Artist issue from May 2003 with a Lipking portrait on the cover with the caption, “Jeremy Lipking, a promising young artist.”  We at RayMar feel a special thrill to have watched him perfect his craft, and know him and his work on a personal level.

Self Portrait as Zorn Oil on linen 7x10"

Monday, December 16, 2013

Show me the Paintings, Take 1 - Casey Baugh

Determination and a single-minded focus are required to create a body of work for a solo show.  Emily recently attended two back to back shows for Casey Baugh and Jeremy Lipking (featured in Take 2) in Manhattan at the Arcadia Gallery, renamed the Arcadia Contemporary Gallery.

Casey Baugh’s show “Static” opened November 21st.  A young master who creates exceptional portrait work, “Static” catapulted his craft to a new level. It blended his recognizable style and simultaneously departed from traditional representational work. In an interview about this new direction, Casey said, “I have been painting for ten years and right now I feel like I’m starting all over again with a whole new set of materials, problems and challenges. I feel like this is what I should have been doing from the beginning.”

For “Static” Casey took inspiration from a childhood desire to be an electrical engineer.  He combined his exquisite portrait and figure work with a statement about the world in which we live today. "I want these paintings to say something, comment on the world we are living in," says Baugh.  "It's easy to get trapped and engulfed in all of this (the obsession with technology and social media). Sometimes it is bad, sometimes good . . . sometimes it enlightens us while other times it bogs us down."

With skills seen a century ago combined with images in the modern world, best describes “Static”.  Beautiful faces are paired with unusual accessories.  “Illumination” is a portrait of a dark haired beauty with her head encircled by a blinding fluorescent bulb.

Illumination, 12x16 Oil on Panel by Casey Baugh
The opening night crowd was excited to see these new works and many were red dotted right away. I viewed Casey’s paintings online and thought them to be stunning and fresh.  Artists can become type cast just like actors, so I applaud Casey’s risk taking to broaden his talent and to present his collectors with some original “edgy-ness”.

Casey will be teaching at the Scottsdale Artists' School in Scottsdale, AZ January 6-10.  In this workshop, "Painting the Model", he will discuss the correct way of seeing value, drawing, edge and color, as well as composition theory and design. 
- Catherine Dietrich