Studies From Life: Reproductions of Original Oil Paintings, Charcoal Figure Drawings and Vietnam War Photographs
Painting from life under natural light has been my passion since I first got into the habit of cleaning my palette and washing my brushes daily during two years of full-time study at The Art Students League of New York in the late 1970s. Since then I've sold my paintings through a number of galleries in New York City, Connecticut and New Jersey, and privately to collectors in the metropolitan region
All those galleries have closed their doors, so now I'm primarily selling a limited number of original oil paintings through my online gallery: https://www.etsy.com/shop/RobertHoldenFineArt. I'm hoping to sell reproductions of much more of my work, sold and unsold, through this marketing website.
Anyone who has ever taken up painting or any other art form as a hobby or a profession can tell you how much pleasure the creative process affords. For myself, I've always felt that painting on a regular basis for the pure emotional reward is more important than painting for the art market. Sometimes I'll choose a still life theme simply because the color scheme is novel or the set-up presents an interesting painting challenge. I'm more innately inspired when painting a landscape or the human face or figure, and I love to paint those genres when I get the opportunity
The prime motivation for all my work is the thrill of paint handling to achieve 'virtual reality' on canvas when working from life on subjects beautifully revealed by natural light. Sometimes an art lover will understand intuitively the passion that went into creating the work. When that happens, I'm always genuinely mystified, but humbly grateful that my work has been truly appreciated, whether it's by an audience of one or many.
When I was exploring the status-oriented gallery world, I crafted the following artist's statement a number of years ago, and it still remains true to my nature and practice: 'Many things are so beautiful and so keenly felt when the light is right that I want to paint them just the way they are. I am encouraged to persevere in this impossible quest by the example of past generations of artists whose works are so true to life and so compelling.'