I Am Fascinated with These Paintings

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I will not make any more boring art.

Ian Whitmore: Verdura
Ian Whitmore: This is Our Music was on display at G Fine Arts in DC from January 10 – February 14, 2009. This means I have already missed the show and have nothing more than a computer with which to view these images. Oh well. It could be worse.

Maybe I am experiencing these paintings like a match dot com dater – they look amazing on a computer screen, but, over coffee, only so-so? Although I am sure these paintings are completely different in person, and they are extremely photogenic on a computer screen, I suspect that, face to face, they would not disappoint.

The Oval Portrait
They’re quite odd – an awkward mix of photorealism, impressionism, and abstraction, and, as a body of work, inconsistently one style or another. I prefer this to a formula. You sense that each painting requires a different solution and the artist’s commitment to this, regardless of the direction his search takes him. Obviously skilled with a brush, Whitmore flaunts his talents in certain areas of a painting, but only where it is needed.
Whitmore’s paintings ask us questions – about sight and seeing, comprehension, and our inherited lexicon of image-based vocabulary. His works pit empirical comprehension against commonly held beliefs, and visually, it comes off as true.

– Cara Ober


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