Over the holidays we will be highlighting a number of members of Buffalo Society of Artists (BSA), so that you might support them by purchasing original works of art. Thanks to Paul Rybarczyk at BSA for helping me put these together. Visit the BSA website to learn more about the institution – one of the oldest continually operating arts organizations in the country. Next up on our list is artist John Sargent:
John Sargent is a new member of the BSA and new to the Buffalo area, having moved here from Cleveland, Ohio, this fall. His work is currently showing at the Buffalo Art Studio’s Annual Artists Exhibit on the 5th floor of the TriMain building; his studio is also located there, where he has additional work up for sale. He has shown his work nationally and has work in collections globally.
In his own words:
I once told an art reviewer that there should be no aboutness about it… He wrote that my work is about aboutness…lesson learned.
When I was younger I would complain that I was being misunderstood and unappreciated. In the midst of one of these tantrums, my father, who was reading the newspaper, put down his paper and gave me one of those “now listen to me looks” and said “paint something people can understand, cut the complaining out.” He picked up his paper, end of discussion…lesson learned.
I will tend to the philosophical and abstract, but my strength is color and light. My work is a merging of these seeming opposites.
Another little story: I had the privilege of standing at an archeological site at the edge of a bay in Scotland at twilight. It was getting very cold. It was October and beautiful, quiet, and a little sad. All that was left were pilings where the huts of a village had been. I could imagine those people looking out to sea, wondering what the next day would bring–food or raiders or…? I could feel the absence of their story, lost in time. I knew that this is our fate as well. At the same time, I was present to the beauty and fragility of our journey, and that we all, in some way, have this common bond.
The “Great Old Masters” are principally my guides now. I have no desire to copy them as a good mannerist does, but their vision of our humanity teaches me; I hope that those lessons are powerfully expressed so that this peculiar journey we all share continues to be shared and expressed for the gift that it is. Being an artist is a gift, not an easy gift, but a gift nevertheless. It is consequently in the giving and sharing that it counts…that is my take on it anyway. Lesson learned?
Deborah Stewart, Pat Pendleton, Kristin Damstetter, Alana Adetola Fajemisin, Sarah and John Cozzemera, Rob Hopkins, Jennifer Seth-Cimini, Elisabeth Strong, Michael Mulley, Patricia Schwimmer, Mikel Doktor, Jerome Greenberg, Elizabeth Leader, Jacqueline Welch, Doreen DeBoth, Joe Cascio, Candace Masters, Iris Kirkwood, Lukia Costello, Michael Morgulis, Julie Leatherbarrow, Chris Liberti, Michael Mararian, Daniel Rodgers, Bruce Adams, Ken Payne, Christina Cooke, Elise Anne Brooks, Frank Cravotta, Jackie Albarella, Gary Melius, Melissa Campbell, Jeff Quigley, Nancy Moran, Vincent Alejandro, Patti Harris, Eileen Graetz
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