Artist of the Month: James Napoleon

My life is surrounded by artists—my mother, my father, my stepfather, my girlfriend, and my girlfriend’s father. For the next five months, I am going to post an entry on each of them, one artist per month. Why? Because art is inspiring and I have a lot if inspiration, that’s why. Hopefully, by the end of this series, you will be inspired too. And then you’ll thank me for providing you with inspiration. Just wait, you’ll see.

So, without further adieu, August’s artist is my father, James Napoleon. I’ve admired my dad as a painter for as far back as I can remember—I can recall being astounded by his ability to recreate as I watched him in his studio during weekend custody-shifts at his house. Later, during my formative years, I began to appreciate the complexities involved in his artwork—not only just his ability to represent. For example, here’s a recognizable scenario:

Off Montauk, 2004

There’s sky, water, and a lighthouse. Only, the lighthouse is levitating. Yet, because of the incredible detail, the scene looks real. Not to mention the painting is on a triangular cement board. So, next time you think to yourself, “Yeah, realism is impressive, but it’s just so dull and unimaginative, that’s why I prefer the feeling and creativity that go into abstract,” remember James Napoleon. Creative and talented!

But it’s not all amusing reality-alterations with James (don’t worry, we know that’s your turf, Dali). His eye (and brush) for scenes to paint truthfully is exceptional. And, most importantly, his execution is right-on. Of these, this is my favorite:

Celibacy, 2008

Aside from seascapes and fantasies, he’s built series on autumn leaves, high school classmate portraits (sold to to hang in their headquarters), and most recently, an exploration of his obsession with Italian pop singer Mina Mazzini. This series can be seen (and collected from!) the Peter Lawrence Gallery in Gaylordsville, CT from September 7th to October 7th.

And that concludes my first Artist of the Month entry. To see more from my pops, check him out on his website and/or Facebook… or in real life (!) at the following exhibitions:

Obsession – Peter Lawrence Gallery (Gaylordsville CT USA)
September 7 – October 7
Reception September 9 (Sunday) 1-5pm

Fantasy Paintings – Burnham Library (Bridgewater CT USA)
October 1 – November 21
Reception October 7 (Sunday) 1-3pm

Blessing of the Artist – Spiritual Renewal Center (Northville NY USA)
November 10-11 2012

Stay tuned for next month’s artist: …nah I wouldn’t ruin that surprise for you. Guess you’ll really have to stay tuned!



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