I have several paintings in this group exhibit at Chautauqua Instutution’s Strohl Art Center. I spent two formative summers at the School of Art at Chautauqua, one studying with Stanley Lewis and a then a second as an employee. The place and the amazing teachers and peers I met while there made those two summers high points in my journey to becoming a professional artist. It is an honor to be included in this exhibition.
VACI has been the starting point for hundreds of now established artists. Generally we meet them for one brief summer as they start out, but what happens next? This exhibition of works by five alumni from the Chautauqua School of Art, who have gone on to successful careers as artists begins to answer that question.
View selected paintings in this exhibit: #clearing
From the press release:
Drawing on the natural world, his Mennonite upbringing, and paint itself as sources of inspiration, Stoltzfus employs an expanded palette of textures and pigments to enrich the physical presence and felt experience of each painting. The accumulation of his signature circular mark-making results in an organic structure and flowing patterns, evoking ethereal atmosphere. Layers of simple shapes and gentle movement imbue the paintings with an inner intensity.
In Sightline, from its brilliant orange and yellow tones to its deep shades of blue and black, a dynamic interplay of colors creates spatial and figural illusions. In Corona, discrete yet gestural accentuation in gold leaf suggests the infinite and sublime. These paintings are at once expressive and restrained, intricate and simple. Oscillating between representation and abstraction, Stoltzfus’ work generates light that is at once natural and preternatural.
Each close look at the work of Randall Stoltzfus, who calls himself, “a landscape painter with a little obsession with circles,” seems different than the last, especially when viewed in person.
— Samuel Harwood, Santa Monica Mirror
His meditative, repetitive circular patterns are hand painted in oils, adding layers of gold leaf and other materials until the surfaces evolve their own unique texture and depth.
Stoltzfus was brought up in the Mennonite community and he spent time as artist in residence at an insane asylum in Italy. Perhaps these experiences influenced his work, which to me feels contemplative, peaceful and nature-based.
Laura Korman Gallery is pleased to exhibit artist Randall Stoltzfus in the gallery’s forthcoming exhibition, PENUMBRA.
A penumbra is defined as incomplete or partial shadow. In astronomy, it refers to the shadow cast on the earth by the moon in a partial eclipse. Brooklyn-based artist Randall Stoltzfus translates these natural phenomena in his current body of work. Celestial blue circles of cerulean and deep cobalt are layered and repeated, dispersed by a spectrum of soft white, yellow and black circles suggestive of dim shadows and illuminated horizon lines. “My paintings take light as subject, and by necessity shadow is what I need to describe that light,” says Stoltzfus. These painted fields of circular marks also echo the rings of light found in the shadow patterns beneath trees during a solar eclipse – a visual metaphor that Stoltzfus maintains as an artistic touchstone.
Stoltzfus’ meditative process begins slowly – compositions develop over months, and even years as controlled, circular layers of oil, hand mixed pigments, and gold or palladium leaf are added over time. Abstracted landscapes and figures are illuminated and obscured in a push and pull of darkness and light as Stoltzfus builds visible texture. He compares his meticulous technique to the layering of scrim, a strong, coarse fabric, allowing the work to become a sum of its layers. In paintings like After, the effect is phantasmagoric – white and subtle ochre gold circles emerge from an abyss of blue as if illustrating the memory of a hazy dream. Other works reveal slightly more tangible references – in Penumbra, the moon’s dominating presence seemingly illuminates a dark forest of trees over an expansive eight-foot canvas. Yet, Stoltzfus’ subjects remain largely enigmatic.
Sight and perception are intrinsic to Stoltzfus’ thoughtful process. “Our perception is … always partial, and always collective in a way we sometimes find difficult to acknowledge,” says Stoltzfus. “We see individual things, less often aware of the broader condition of light and shadow that make this possible. The sources that power our sight dwarf what we actually comprehend.”
PENUMBRA is an intimate study of light and the physiological response. Drawing reference from the color field painters Mark Rothko and Barnett Newman, as well as the textured works of abstract expressionist Richard Pousett-Dart, Stoltzfus engages directly with his audience’s vision for a response that is at once physical and emotional. His paintings defy the two-dimensionality of the canvas to create visual narratives of wonder and mystery.
Laura Korman Gallery is pleased to present COAST TO COLOR, a group exhibition featuring artists Cara Barer, Jordan Eagles, James Lecce, Katherine Tzu-Lan Mann, Maureen McQuillan, Katherine Rohrbacher, and Randall Stolzfus. The exhibition is on view from January 7 through March 5, 2016 with a public reception on Saturday, January 16, 5-8 p.m.
Representing artists from across the east and west coasts, COAST TO COLOR delivers a vibrant selection of color-intensive works from seven artists that challenge the limitations set forth by traditional media to bring forth expressive ignitions of color.
coast (verb): “to continue to move or advance after effort has ceased; keep going on acquired momentum.”
Drawing reference from Pointillist techniques, Randall Stoltzfus builds continuous, intricately layered circular patterns with oil, adding carefully selected pigments, gold leaf, and other media to produce abstract horizons of deep blue and white. From afar, this textured layering produces a celestial glow of nearly distinguishable forms that emerge from indigo shadows. Continue reading “Coast to Color”→