Figurative art is created and appreciated through close observation: Observation on the part of the artist, who interprets the subject depicted. Observation on the part of the viewer, who perceives the resulting image, as well as the artist's techniques and creative strategies.
This exhibition invites close observation. A wide selection of drawings and other works – some finished pieces, some unpolished sketches – reveal artists "in the act" of creating. These works tend to be small-scale and detailed. Their beauties and pleasures are revealed only by careful attention.
Modern and contemporary masters are represented, including John Battenberg, Gordon Cook, Anthony Dubovsky, June Felter, Ruth Gikow, Chaim Gross, John Haley, Elaine de Kooning. Walter Kuhlman, Oswald Kurman, Jack Levine, Mary Robertson, Ben Shahn, Louis Siegriest, Raphael Soyer, Curtis Wright, and Paul Wonner.
Gallery visitors can enjoy a broad range of artistic styles, as well as gain insight into each artist's characteristic subject matter. The works hang in small groupings, giving a feeling for how the art might be displayed in a home setting. The selections come from the Gallery's extensive collections of work on paper.
The main exhibition is complemented by two smaller shows.
Jack Levine: 95th Birthday Salute. Works on paper and canvas by one of America's greatest artists and social commentators – who is celebrating a landmark anniversary.
Raphael Soyer: Artist and Models. Extraordinary prints that depict Soyer's favorite subjects – self portraits, and figures presented in various compositions.