Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Allegories in Sepia

The Seven Temptations, 19 x 41, Tempera on shade cloth on Particle Board, 1989.

Apollo and the Muses, 33 x 45, Tempera on Shade Cloth on Hardboard, 1989.

I had begun experimenting with monochromatic paintings in the mid 1980's.  I originally strove to replicate sepia-tone effect of old-fashioned photos, but soon found burnt sienna to be a better color. Not too dark or light, it can be effectively tinted and shaded and in its lighter tints closely matches flesh color.  After having done a fairly large number "sepia" paintings, I endeavored to create some allegorical taleaux/group portraits.  In 1989 I executed the two ambitious works shown here, one drawn from Christian iconography, the Seven Temptations, and the other from classical mythology, Apollo with the nine Muses.  I believe both these works were exhibited at my first show at Phyllis Kind Gallery in Chicago in 1990.  They were eventually purchased by the noted artist Roger Brown and after his death became part of the Roger Brown Study Collection of the Art Institute.

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