Two Henoch Gallery Artists Finalists in The Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery Competition 2012
Both finalists in this year’s Outwin Boochever Portrait Competition at the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery are featured artists at the Henoch Gallery at 555 W 25th Street in New York City. The Henoch is on my list of favorite Chelsea Galleries and this honor is a testament to the exquisite taste and judgment of the Gallery owners and curators as much as it is to these two great artists.
The Smithsonian recently announced the two finalists for this year, gallery artists David Kassan, with his sentimental painting “A Letter to my Mom,” and Vincent Giarrano, who gained entry to the competition with his City Girl painting. Both artists have extensive portfolios and are well-versed in a variety of tools, methods and the latest portrait media utilized by contemporary artists.
Kassan’s painting can only be described as reverent in nature, tender in structure and majestic in stature. The oil painting is uncharacteristically lifelike, in keeping with similar paintings Kassan has constructed, many of which were on display at the Henoch Gallery in New York during September and October. During his Henoch solo premiere, Kassan illustrated more life-like oil paintings of his father, a baron, two unidentified women and a particularly intricate self-portrait displaying him in motion. The canvases have the appearance of still photographs and the subjects express little emotion in their facial expressions. He also exhibited strong proficiency in five drawings, two portraits and a giclee painting, which were also put on display during his solo exhibition.
Vincent Giarrano, also featured recently at the Henoch Gallery, expresses the same-type of life-like vivacity in his oil points, although his subjects are less morose, and instead engaged in everyday city living. His canvas displayed people walking on busy street corners, women buzzing themselves into their apartments, having conversations on sidewalks and even standing idly by on the sidewalk texting. The portraits appear so natural and lifelike that they appear more as photographs, rather than paintings.
The finalists will display an original piece of artwork between March 23, 2013 and February 23, 2014, so if you’re in the area and interested in viewing insightful and powerful paintings, this gallery may be a good place to begin. Given the similarities in talent and ability, but stark differences in scenery, color, and tone, it will be interesting to see who is chosen as the winner of this year’s prestigious honor.
If you are interested in seeing my photography, please visit www.donaldscarincipictures.com.