Interview with Brian Calvin

Posted to Exhibitions, Kunstformidling on 04.11.2016, 13:54 by Susanne Roald with

"Although I am an image based painter, I am not interested in producing representational paintings. I don't paint figures in order to create narratives, to "tell stories". I think of images as obstacles. They are complications and I then use the process of painting to find some kind of idiosyncratic resolution. Rather than creating abstract works, I prefer to experience abstraction through the repetitive tending of images." -Brian Calvin

Since the 1990s, Brian Calvin has developed a characteristic painting technique, depicting young people in the Californian landscape. The portraits are abstracted into a simplified idiom with strong lighting, while at the same time the figures retain a lifelike quality.

In recent years, Calvin has highlighted individual features of his subjects’ faces, such as the eyes – which seem to suggest an interior world beyond the space of the canvas – or the mouth. By fixing the focus, Calvin’s close-ups promotes the contact that can arise between the painting and the viewer.

Video interview with Brian Calvin at Astrup Fearnley Museet


Explore Brian Calvin's paintings Simple Twist (2016), Shared Borders (2016) and Shared Space (2016) in the exhibition Los Angeles – A Fiction until 22 January 2017! You can also browse his works in our web catalogue.

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