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Artist Bio

Andre Kohn

     The precise convergence of three dynamic forces—culture, environment and talent—combined to produce one of the most collected figurative painters on the American art scene today. Raised by an artistically gifted family near the Caspian Sea in southern Russia, Andre Kohn’s childhood was marked by the natural splendor of mountains and sea, and by an unfettered access to all the creative arts.
     His mother was a symphony violinist and his father a noted linguist, writer and sculptor. Both were educators trained in psychology who gave their only child unrestricted opportunity to explore the depths of art and his own obvious talent. Paintings, sculpture and books filled the family’s tiny, one-bedroom home. It was a childhood without material possessions, but a childhood which taught him that the creative arts are the only true wealth. Kohn’s parents also encouraged their son to draw on any surface—including the wallpaper in their home—which they simply re-papered when he grew old enough to favor sketchbooks. His memory of childhood is that “music and art were everywhere.”
     While always innovative in drawing and painting, Kohn’s professional art education began at age 15 when he was chosen to apprentice in the studios of Moscow’s most esteemed Impressionist and Social Realism artists. At that time, Impressionism in Russia was nearing the end of a harmonic and prolific century—a prodigious period in Russian art that literally changed the world. Kohn’s childhood and art education corresponded with an eruption of cultural progress in all the arts, including ballet, literature, music and painting. He was principally influenced by such artists as, Nicolai Fechin, Ilya Repin, Valentin Serov, and the classics: Edgar Degas , John Sargent, Joaquin Sorolla.

     He followed the apprenticeships with a classical academic formal art education at the University of Moscow where he studied with members of the last great generation of Russian Impressionists. With his talent already in evidence, he quickly earned an invitation from the Artist’s Union of Bulgaria (Europe) to stage a prestigious one-man show in one of their country’s major exhibition halls. Still in his first year of college, Kohn was the only student so honored for the year.
     He fondly remembers the majesty of the University. “The experience was totally unique,” he has said. “The atmosphere was one of huge columns, marble floors and masterworks on the walls. Legends of the Russian art world walked the halls and discussed your work. It was a privilege to be there, and it laid the foundation for my entire career.”

     However, fate soon dramatically redirected the young artist’s life and art. His father, a colonel in the Russian Army, was the first candidate to participate in the post-Cold War officer exchange program at the U.S. Air War College in Montgomery, Alabama. In 1993, while Kohn was in America visiting his parents, his father announced his intention to defect to the United States. Suddenly, the young artist realized he would never again be permitted to return to his homeland.
It took little time for American art audiences and media to discover the mature, fresh figurative painting style of the young Russian. His first one-man show in America created instant interest in his work and helped introduce Kohn to audiences in his adopted country.

     Kohn remains a preeminent leader of Figurative Impressionism which seeks to capture the complexity as well as the simplicity and directness of the human form. “I’m seeking my own unique, poetic interpretation of the moment,” he says. “I’m striving to find the extraordinary in the ordinary.”
Despite Kohn’s unrepeatable pallet, personally developed style and unique interpretations of form, his education is enduring. From his home in Arizona, Kohn travels the world for inspiration, periodically returning to France to continue his formal, classical studies.

     Kohn’s work is represented by premier galleries in the United States and he is a regular contributor to invitational exhibitions. Kohn is a frequent subject of highly regarded art publications, and his unique ability to communicate the expressiveness of the human form has kept him a mainstay of private, corporate and permanent museum collections worldwide. 



Barbara Gallagher
(August 7, 1933 - July 27, 2006)

     Uniquely traditional subjects transformed by a personal vision and a strong sense of color and design distinguish the unusual work of Barbara Gallagher.  Her paintings reveal groups of figures that exist in a palette of widely varying settings and moods.  She continued to create works of art that were full of mysterious surroundings, of beautiful color; color that is at the same time both vibrant and subtly peaceful.  They were carefully composed so that the theme is developed by the viewer's sense of reality and fantasy.

     What began for Barbara as a search for a different way to paint figures, in an abstract arrangement of shapes and colors, had evolved into a full commitment to discovering people and their fantasy world within the picture format.  The effect is joyful to the soul, moves straight from the eye to the heart, and leaves the admirer wanting to return and enjoy, time and time again.

     A dominant figure in the Arts Community for decades, Barbara's work is recognized throughout the United States.  A stroke victim in 1995, Barbara had done what people say was impossible; she used her opposite hand to create her paintings.  Although the mechanics had changed, the philosophy of the art had not. These mechanics, as once stated by Barbara..."My paintings begin with paint of differing colors randomly applied to the canvas or paper until it is covered.  These colors have no direction at this stage.  My mind is deliberately open to the suggestions of shapes that appear as the juxtaposition of colors develop.  By constanly turning the canvas or paper, and continuing to add glazes and shapes, I work until a shoulder, attitude of head or body appears; then I know what is trying to appear.   I continue painting the extraneous shapes, composition, complications, and message of the figures and/or flowers.  Pattern intrigues me.  So many of my works have elaborate shapes complicating the surface.  I work for the pleasure of creating these images, seeing what will appear magically from very random choices of color, and amounts of paint that are applied with as much freedom as possible."

     In 2005, Barbara suffered another stroke and it was determined by her family that she should close her gallery (Green Garden Gallery) after 30 years in business.  Although her health continued to dwindle, Barbara continued to fight, and paint, up to the time of her death.  Barbara was a lover-of-people, understanding of their love for life, and this quality is exposed in every work of art her hands mastered.  She is missed terribly by her family, close friends, fans of her work, and all of those that came to know her.   

Michael Rosenvain

Nan Cunningham

     From the heritage of a deep south upbringing, from the staid traditions and unsettling turbulence of Montgomery Alabama in the 50's and 60's, through her academic and studio experience at Auburn University, to the life of a working artist and teacher; Nan's reflections upon the journey are the artistic records of her deep explorations.  As expressed in her own works, "It's about the Process, not the Product."
     Her process begins with the first touch of the brush to the paint; the paint to the surface; and then movement of emotional energy through the medium. She says, "the brushstroke is the most telling thing.  The moment one puts the first mark on the paper or the canvas, the movement begins...the movement of the medium and the emotion.  That is how the story begins; with the mark, the first mark.  The movement surpasses the subject.  The the student, the artist, is honest and the work is honest, then it just happens: we tap into it, whatever IT is. 

     "My mother was a naive artist who began to paint late in life, just as I began to teach.  Her work informs me to this day, as do the words and works of all my students.  She gave me color...her color; a great living gift.  We once had a pink house with fish and kites on the ceilings...a crazy wonderful thing to look upon, to wonder about.  It was not the typical house next door, and I am not the typical neighbor next door.  I am however, very comfortable in the traditional forms because it is what I grew up with, but I also grew up breaking through these forms...colors and light shining through." 

Yuri Tremler

     Yuri Tremler was born in the Ukraine in 1961.  He attended the College of Arts in Kharkov.  Later he continued his studies at the Kharkov Art and Design Academy and the Gall Design School in Germany, and worked as a theater decorator as an interior designer.

     In 1996, Tremler immigrated to Israel where he tried his hand in crafts and jewelry, further refining his sensibilities regarding texture, shape and function.  In Israel, many new materials became available to the artist - multimedia of acrylics, pastes and varnishes opened a whole range of new possibilities to Tremler.  After two years he became a full time painter; exhibiting his works regularly in Israel and the United States.

     Between 1988 and 2003 Tremler created a large body of paintings, which have combined both figurative and abstract approach.  His closely related compositions show female sulhouettes and goblets, flowers and vases, often playing with the use of light, all within the context of interior settings.  Yuri's concentration on color and texture is paramount. The artist reflects..."Basides the search for a new language in the deorative painting, I am intrigued by the contrast between shiny and matte surfaces, planes and volumes."

     His paintings please the eye with a richness of color, a great sense of color balance and confident brushwork.  One can find echoes of the avant-garde movements from the early 20th century, themes of bohemian lifestyles, or memories of conversation over a cocktail from long ago. 

     Subjects of Tremler's paintings seem to be distant and blurred, but they catch poetic moments of life.  Yuri's art reminds us of a sudden still life, left after an intimate party, of time spent with friends, or a shared past which still excites.  Sometimes whimsical, sometimes nostalgic, Tremler's art reaches inward to the basic emotions of humanity.

Madison Latimer

     I live on a farm in the rolling hills of the Piedmont of South Carolina. From my backyard/barnyard, I paint stories of creation, disappointment, and survival. "Me and the chickens" celebrate life every day. If ya'll are hearing something laughing and it's not you, trust me, it's just us chickens dancing and singing in the barnyard.

     With paintings of guinea foul and roosters, I capture their spirits, laughter, and zest for life. I bring to you the reminder of kindness and simple joys of life. We all celebrate life as human beings. My art says, "Folks, take pride in who you are, laugh, and be nice to one another, but above all 'Celebrate life' past, present and future. Now is what we've got."

     My art exudes energy and is a celebration of life, and the overwhelming condition of the human spirit. My art seemed to begin with the death of three relatives that were killed in a ten-wheeler accident in 1995. Through the healing I began to understand and feel the connection with the energy that provides life for all of us. I began to be aware that we are all connected here in the present time to something greater, connected to an eternal force from which we all come. My purpose for this world began to express itself through my art.

     I felt directed to express this through my feelings and art. I knew I needed to create something about the importance of the energy of life; the meaning of life to us in this world. But, I didn't have a format for this expression until one day I saw this little chicken in the barnyard, "Being; just happy." I realized that the chicken was a continuation of the life force that is present in all of us.

     I began to paint chickens. Chickens with expressions that , were startled, happy, and joyful. Things that were common threads to all of us, not just to the chickens, but also to all of us as human beings; part of the human existence; part of our reason for being here on earth. This revelation came through my growth and understanding of who we are and our connection to the divine force. In the process of painting chickens I began to understand that laughter is a key ingredient in our growth and our understanding of ourselves-who we are and our place with the divine connection with the universe.

     When we laugh, we acknowledge in a joyful way that the energy of life is in all of us and in everything in which we are involved. It can be expressed in something as simple as a chicken smiling. I hope as you are enjoying my chickens and my art occupies space in your household ; that every time you look at it, you feel joy come up inside you and it resonates throughout your life. I hope it will make you smile, be happy, and celebrate life. This acknowledgment of ourselves and the joy that comes from being at one with the Universe.

Ted Ellis

     "Unite a man with conviction and Something Powerful Happens."  Ted Ellis is a passionate man.  He is passionate about his family...passionate about his heritage and passionate about his art.  Just ask him and he proudly declares, "I paint subjects that are representative of the many facets of American life as I know it.  I like to think of myself as a creative historian.  I was put here to record history...all aspects of American culture and heritage.  My sole purpose has always been to educate through my art."  Ellis grew up and was educated in New Orleans, a city known for its history, style, and artistic exuberance.  This backdrop inspired Ellis to capture the essence of the subjects of his childhood in the glory of their rich cultural heritage.  Extremely dedicated to his craft, this artist draws on the style that was born in his childhood from impressions of his native city.  The art of this man reveres and celebrates the traditional values of his culture.  Ted Ellis, the man, lives the life he paints about. 
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