Stephane Villafane paints pleasing abstract landscapes. For the last several years, his pieces have been titled simply by the date on which they were composed, a habit of refreshing frankness and good sense for art in this genre.
27.03.2017. Acrylic and Spray Paint on Canvas. 13.8 H x 9.4 W x 0.2 in
In these two, quite recent, pieces, there is little sense of it being any sort of landscape (as indeed they may not be). However, the colors: green, brown, blue, overlaying each other in broad strokes of paint over the canvas, present pleasing and earthy textures that while decorative, are neither gaudy nor pretentious; one can admire them as one might admire the grain of a wooden beam.
28.03.2017. Acrylic and Spray Paint on Canvas. 13.8 H x 9.4 W x 0.2 in
Available for a Limited Time. Acrylic on Paper and Wood. 24 H x 20 W x 0.9 in
In Available for a limited Time by American artist Sam Tudyk a large, unused, billboard looms over two small houses on a green forested hill. Power lines pass behind it, hanging like old cobwebs, reinforcing the impression that, despite the signage’s self-reported availability, the billboard is derelict, once available, but as it turns out, only for a limited time.
Intermission. Mixed media on wood. 16 H x 20 W x 0.9 in
In Intermission an abandoned drive-in theater screen sits in an empty parking lot at night. Drive-in speakers on posts stand in neat rows, wires twisting like weeds. The dilapidated screen is riddled with holes, exposing the ribs of its backing frame. If it is intermission, no one has waited around to see the next act. But who knows? What is old can become new again.
Pinguin. Oil on Canvas. 66.9 H x 47.2 W x 0.7 in
In this painting by Austrian artist Margit Platny, now living and working in Italy, a group of three figures painted in various shades of gray, are seen walking determinedly toward their own colorfully patterned shadows, which extend outward from their feet as might be observed in the last moments of daylight. The ground, painted in places green and others gray, is fog-like, as if the ground were a sheet of glass, or perhaps a mirror, upon which moisture had gathered such that it is only in their shadows that we can see more truly the nature of the world they walk upon.
Looking Back. Acrylic on Canvas. 20 H x 20 W x 1.5 in
In Looking Back by painter Paulina Swietliczko a woman stands on the beach cooling her feet at the water’s edge; her head is turned away to watch two approaching figures, walking or running across the sand. The colors are rich and earthy, and redolent of the calm drowsiness of a hot summer afternoon. Our eyes are drawn toward, and then deflected from the standing woman, as we re-orient ourselves toward the object of her gaze. Or what we guess is the object of her gaze. Indeed, we may wonder whether she is not lost in some pleasant reverie, perhaps a fond memory of some summer day long past.
Garden of Experiences. Oil on Canvas. 31.5 x 39.4 x 0.8 in
Inspired by a visit to the Garden of Experiences, this oil painting by Polish artist Grażyna Smalej depicts a figure laying on green grass beneath a sky filled with colorful dots or spheres. The figure lies on their back, but their face is turned away looking at nothing in particular, except perhaps for a white building in the distance. The dots appear to emanate from the figure, reinforcing the impression that these are not anything physically present, but are instead a manifestation of the person’s reverie; many, no doubt, would wish to share in the experience, forsaking for a time the serious practicality of most of our daytime activities.