The Spirit of Color
Works by VINCENT ARCILESI (1932-2022)
Closing Reception: Friday, October 27, 2023, 6-8pm
On View: September, 28 - Nov 4th, 2023
AHA Fine Art is pleased to present The Spirit of Color, an exhibition featuring recent and earlier paintings, drawings and prints by artist Vincent Arcilesi (1932-2022) selected by co-curators Francesca Arcilesi, Norma Homberg, and the AHA Fine Art staff. The exhibition remains on view from September 28th through October 29th, 2023, with an opening reception on Thursday, September 28th from 6pm to 9pm at 175 Tenth Avenue, Manhattan, New York.
Works in this exhibition demonstrate a clear consideration of bright and incandescent expressions of color. While exploring the tones in his landscapes and figurative work, Arcilesi transitions between sharp and contrasting light. The resulting range of shadows permeating works throughout the exhibition highlight his fascination with elements carefully within individual compositions, relying on a careful investigation of the interrelationship between anatomy, psychological expressions, and abstract forms. Arcilesi’s meticulous attention to detail and form affirm his observation of the emotional impact of careful arrangements of compositions, light, form, concept and expression for the viewer.
In Anette (above left), circa 1970 a female figure leans slightly, sitting with one leg bent as she casually straddles the model stand. By layering paint and mounting energetic and subtle brush strokes, Arcilesi creates dramatic shifts of color and light. The figure is set against a vivid red backdrop, and is indicative of Arcilesi’s work during the period of the late 1960s-70s, in which he painted live, capturing the scene in its entirety before him while revealing a heightened emotional state. The model’s hands are clasped as her eyes, transfixed, are emphasized by hues of brick, ochre and red, partially illuminating her face and upper torso. Her melancholic and forlorn expression that often re-appears in Arcilesi’s models’ poses.
In The Gathering of the Gods (above right), Arcilesi pays careful attention to figure and landscape, depicting a backdrop of a combination of iconic umbrella pine, cypress, primeval oaks and sacred palm trees. His careful linework and attention to complementary colors evoke the wild and ornamental gardens of Rome. As the golden horizon delicately perches upon the seven hills of Rome, two nude figures sit at the edge of Nicolas Poussin’s tomb in homage to the painter. A young boy on a horse gazing downward, perhaps mourning his loss. For Arcilesi, this composition could only be painted to his satisfaction by painting onsite and plein air. The scene is sharpened by the intensity of the charged atmosphere around him, as Arcilesi dedicated himself to translating the rich tones and full shadows illuminating his surroundings: a process integral to his authentic approach to painting realities into heightened fantasies.
Arcilesi has exhibited extensively in New York City, across the United States, and internationally since 1966, including solo, group and museum exhibitions, including: The Whitney Biennial, NYC, Brooklyn Museum, NYC, Butler Institute of American Art Youngstown, OH, San Francisco Museum of Art, CA, Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, DC, Museum of Modern Art, NY, P.S. 1, NYC, and Contemporary Museum of Art, Verona, Italy. His work is included in books and publications and he is represented in numerous public and private collections, including The Art Institute of Chicago, IL. the Hirshhorn Museum, Washington DC, and the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, IL.
My hope is that when I leave the canvas as the creator, the viewer steps in the same spot and will feel the drama, passion and excitement. - Vincent Arcilesi
For more information/visuals, please contact Francesca Arcilesi & Norma Homberg at firstname.lastname@example.org
Museum at FIT
Duane Street Loft, " Arcilesi's ...large -scale painting, "A painting so ambitious, so reminiscent of Old Masters, so clearly well done, cannot be dealt with lightly...[It is] astonishing in its size, color impact, subject matter and composition. - Hady O'Bell
...one intrepid soul, Vincent Arcilesi, tethered his easel to the windy lip of the Grand Canyon to record on spot its labyrinthine wrinkles. - Robert Hughes
Our cover artist Vincent Arcilesi has had his landscapes shown in significant shows around the country and is regarded today as an important realist. Many of his works depict the landscapes of the Catskills and Adirondack Mountains, where he often spends the summer months. - Pat Van Gelder
Vincent Arcilesi combines more than anyone else represented here the old and the new. He makes reference to different period in Art history while clearly locating his subjects in the here and now. His classical nudes placed in lushly atmospheric, fully representational spaces as simple as a studio setting but they allude to narrative content. Treated with a masterful handling of form, figures and space together create the impression of a great historical painting. One recalls Ana Mendieta's film works equally charged with symbolism and painterly qualities. Citing also Philip Pearlstein, Lennart Anderson, Alex Katz, Ben Kamihira, and Jack Beal. Arcilesi remains an extremely distinctive painter in his own right. - Florence Lynch, Curator