Sunday, January 17, 2010

CLASSICAL REALIST




When thinking about “plein air” painting, which is simply a French term for painting out of doors, the thought is naturally one of landscape. More unusual is the practice of plein air portrait painting, as practiced by classical realist painter Allan R. Banks. The infrequent pursuit of this approach is understandable. The usual controlled lighting and background conditions, employed to make portrait painting easier, are replaced with the much harder to manage background integration (painting essentially a portrait and a landscape) and the fleeting lighting conditions inherent to outdoor painting. The result of taking on that challenge, however, is a refreshingly different kind of portrait. Banks works in the tradition of academic painters from the late 19th Century who also did notable figurative works set in landscapes, like Jules Bastien-Lepage and Daniel Ridgeway Knight, as well as “impressionistic” realists like Sorolla and Sargent. Banks studied with noted painters Richard Lack and R.H. Ives Gammel and has achieved notice in realist and naturalist painting circles and has for seven years been the President of the American Society of Classical Realism.
(Charley Parker at Lines and Colors)



The Early works by Allan Banks
Emerald and Rose (Sotheby's sale image)
The Girl depicted was used in many paintings (1970s)
Private collection
From arhiveartworks (allanrbanks)


Woods Closeup
From portraitartist.com


Peonies
From gandynet.com


Monet's Gate at Giverny
Oil on canvas,
Private collection
From ARC


Children with rabbit
From ardor.net


Study of a Frenchman
From GANDY GALLERY


Watering Girl
From Skadi Forum

From Portrait Painter
Allan R. Banks is a well respected artist with art collectors, dealers and among his peers. His work has been part of several museum tour exhibitions with the Classical Realism movement, which he was later to serve as the President. He was recipient of the John F. And Anna Stacy award and the prestigious Elizabeth T Greenshields fellowship for two years. As a fine artist nurtured in the traditions of the atelier/studio methodology he takes great pride as an accomplished artist first and foremost. Portrait painting is the natural extension therein and better serves the design challenges of portraiture. His figurative compositions can be seen at REHS Galleries, NYC. The portrait painting process is an exciting opportunity for the subject and the artist. Allan works to make the portrait as much a work of art as it is a likeness.
(Portrait Painter)
The rudiments of Art are set firmly in the atelier-studio system stemming from a careful study of nature, sound technique and the close working relationship of a practicing artist-Mentor with a handful of gifted students. Ultimately leading to creating a personal style and vision honed by hard work and persistence. Experimenting to find the right balance of technique and "seeing" the painter finds great reward and acclaim for the right combination of both. The Naturalist ideal defined itself through it's champion Jules Bastien Lepage (1848 - 1884).
(allanbanks.com)


The Communicant, Homage to Bastien Lepage
Oil on canvas
From allanbanks.com


Minstrel's Song
From allanrbanks.googlepages.com


"With outstanding draftsmanship, Banks' paintings are at once harmonious and vivacious and, whether portraying his subject in dappled sunlight or in the luminous light of dusk, they are studded with fragments of light that eternally preserve them. His canvases reveal reflective figures as if one were discovering the innermost private moments of his subjects."
— Robert Stenstrom, Fine Art Dealer at portraitartist.com
Allan believes "that portraiture represents the artistic legacy of a culture and place in time...it is the unique blend of humanity paying homage to humanity". He strives for the indefinable qualities presented through naturalism and the individual uniqueness of the sitter.
(portraitartist.com)
"Banks' own works show his technical prowess in characterizing the human figure as well as in a keen sensitivity for recording the evanescent quality of atmosphere and outdoor light. His skillfully wrought canvases mark him not only as a talented craftsman, but as a link in the great chain of naturalist painters." — American Artist Magazine at portraitartist.com


Girl in white
Private collection
From allanrbanks.googlepages.com


Reverie
Rehs Galleries, NYC
From allanrbanks.googlepages.com


The Blue Silk Scarf
Oil on canvas
Rehs Galleries, NYC
Public collection
From ARC


Portrait of Sean Scott Esq.
Oil on canvas,
Private collection
From ARC


Autumn Whispers
From AMERICAN GALLERY


Portrait Of Helen
Rehs Galleries, NYC
From AMERICAN GALLERY


Lilies Of The Field
From AMERICAN GALLERY


Girl From The Village
Rehs Galleries, NYC
From AMERICAN GALLERY


A Little Coaxing
From AMERICAN GALLERY


Turning Leaves
From classicalrealism.com


Philosophically, Banks has always adhered to the importance of finely crafted art as practiced before and during the Nineteenth Century. Banks' style, philosophy, and reputation have secured him several honorable commissions in portraiture, such as U.S. Congressman Hamilton Fish, actor Robert Montgomery, and the children of billionaire John Sall. He was elected president of the American Society of Classical Realism in 1997, and in 2000, served as Vice-Chairman of American Society of Portrait Artists. By June 2001, he became director of Artist and Gallery Relations for the Art Renewal Center. With a career in portraiture spanning over 20 years, Banks has proven himself as an accomplished and successful painter. His delicately painted features combine with natural colors and mesmerizing backgrounds, showing his sensitivity to light and talent in capturing cherished moments. These elements work together to produce a beautiful finished portrait that is assured to be treasured for generations.
(leonloard.com)


Allan R Banks working on Boy with Scythe
From home (allanrbanks)


Boy with Scythe
GANDY GALLERY



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