Friday, November 27, 2015

David Shevlino

March 29, 2010 by  
Filed under cityscape painting, Figure Painting, videos

Reflection 2008 Oil on Panel 8 x 10 inches

David Shevlino paints a wide range of subjects but lately appears to focus on the figure and urban scenes. In many of his works, especially the landscapes, there is a wonderful balance between slow careful observation and the mad rush to capture fleeting light situations. In his urban landscapes David slows down a bit and considers inventive ways to simplify the complexities of crowds, traffic and architecture by emphasizing the design of the broad play of light and shadow that creates rhythmic passages and geometric tensions in the painting.

Seeing videos online of David Shevlino highly accomplished drumming in an amazing arrangement of Thelonious Monk makes me wonder how much of the Jazz musician sensibility spills over into his painting as well – perhaps like how intervals and proportions of his gestural broad brush strokes accentuate and give counterpoint to the driving beat of light. Like a Jazz musician taking an old standard as a point of departure, David uses the commonplace urban views as a riff for his visual improvisation.

This delightful youtube video by his friend John Thornton gives a warm introduction and impression of David Shevlino and his paintings.

Evening Color 2008 Oil on Panel 8 x 10 inches

The small “Evening Color” appears painted from life and has a gutsy bravura to the paint handling where rapid drawing and painting are fuzed with design decision. The visual pull of the perspective is reinforced by the flow of traffic as well as lines drawn through the wet paint revealing the yellow ground of the panel. These drawn elements somewhat interrupt the tonal structure of the painting but enhances the sense of movement and mood and almost gives it trippy radiating aura coming from the central figure. Some of his city views bring to mind similarly powerfully graphic representations of busy street scenes painted by Ben Aronson. As much as I like many of his urban scenes, figures and other works I find myself coming back to his more suburban views such as the white house in bright daylight with a woman hanging laundry, here the high keyed light seems to have a greater emotional punch and is evocative of Fairfield Porter similar subjects.

Hanging Laundry Oil on Panel 8 x 10 inches

I like his willingness to experiment with new approaches as seen in his more recent figure painting such as pearls before swine. His juxtaposition of the finely painted nude woman with piggy images in which inkjet photos were transferred directly onto the canvas all against an abstracted blue background invites a narrative interpretation. The direct almost confrontational gaze from the model to the viewer combined with her passive stance defies easy explanation but has a satisfying edginess that also has a visual staying power, unlike some more post-modern works where it seem more of a one-trick joke pony.

David Shevlino Pearls Before Swine 2010 oil/mixed media 43 x 39 inches

Roof Top 2007 Oil on Canvas 40 x 40 inches

He studied at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA. and the Art Student’s League in New York. He has had articles written about him in New American Paintings, American Artist Magazine, American Art Collector Magazine and Art New England.

David Shevlino has shown his paintings at the DFN Gallery in NY, Gross McCleaf Gallery in Philadelphia, and the George Billis Gallery in LA.

Here are a few more works of note.

Uphill Oil on Canvas 10 x 8 inches

Distant Clouds Oil on Canvas 22 x 22 inches

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10 Responses to “David Shevlino”
  1. Brett Busang says:

    I was introduced to Mr. Shevlino’s work through a magazine I thoroughly detest – American Artist. Its indefatigably toadying stance before the Great Icons of our time – as well as its necessarily forgiving approach to the amateur spirit, is cynically calcualting. Yet it isn’t all bad because through its pages walk some of the most distinguished perceptual painters alive today. I consider this a happy accident, but still. . .

    In any case, I was not only impressed with this artist’s technical command, but his ability to apply it in a deeply personal sort of way. He was – and is – able to isolate the figure as Edward Hopper did, thereby launching a plea for man’s (or woman’s) integration with a natural world man (and woman) have, for the most part, denied. His interest in imbuing private moments with an intensity one yearns for them to have in real life is exceptional. I also like studying his work for its integration of a personal aesthetic with an overall feeling for what it’s like to live and breathe at this, or any given, moment.

    He is a superb draftsman whose self-portraiture is a living document. You cannot say that about the merely talented. An inner “voice” with which one is born (or not) carries the day. Without it, the most accomplished painter (I will not say artist) is just “showing off.”

    The video showed Mr. Shevlino to be a warm, unassuming person. I liked him. It’s a good thing to like somebody whose work has captivated you.

  2. Paula says:

    Again, another artist you have introduced to me. Enjoy Shevilo’s work. Loved the video, quaint and personal. A pleasure to watch. Thank you!

  3. I’m with Paula in thanking you once again, Larry, for opening my eyes to another great painter. The only drawback being another hit to my psyche as I realize how many outstanding artists there are out there, and how far I have yet to come to even consider myself passable as a painter!! Hope you’re well, keep up the great work.

  4. Hi, I recently discovered your website and I am so thrilled and grateful for all you are doing! You have filled a huge void in the art world, emphasis on HUGE. The art publications that are out there are just so out of touch for me and most of the artists I know.

    I enjoyed the Shevlino blog so much, especially the wonderful video. I hadn’t heard of him before and will look further into his work as I’ve done with many of the artists I’ve become acquainted with on your website. I love his direct approach to the paint, the ‘physicality’ in his handling of the medium, and simplicity of composition even in the more complex urban scenes. Also, the ongoing search and experimentation that comes through in a very personal and sincere way. I felt little flashes of familiarity coming through- reminiscent of many artists; Stuart Shils, Ken Auster, Edward Hopper, Fairfield Porter, Erik Aho…..and many others.

    I hope he does consider teaching…. workshops!

    Watching the video I was thinking about sales and this economy too. Somehow I don’t feel so badly about my own meager sales of the last two years knowing that an artist of David Shevlino’s caliber is being so affected.
    I wish him the best.

    Thank you so much for this and all your efforts!

    • larry says:

      Thanks for you comment Molly, you made my day! I have a number of really good painters lined up for the next few weeks so stay tuned.

      Brett, I hear you about American Artist Magazine. It’s a love/hate thing for sure. I keep letting my subscription run out and then changing my mind and renewing again a few months later.

      Jimmy, Thanks for your comment – I’m doing very well. Again, I have some awesome people in the queue and just need more time to sit down and put it all together.

      I hope everyone will consider visiting the forum here, it’s been slow going in getting people to join the discussion board but hopefully we can get some interesting conversations going soon.

  5. I’ve been visiting your website for several months but haven’t commented before. Just want to say how much I appreciate it. It’s become my Sunday morning routine . . . like curling up with the arts section of the NY Times. I’ve read and reread your interview with Shils—thoughtful questions and honest, deeply-felt responses. I had seen a few of David Shevlino’s paintings before but seeing the ones you’ve chosen to post here and his videos really gives us the breadth of his sensibilities. Thank you so much for providing this wonderful resource! (And, for Molly: he is teaching workshops and lists them on his website:

  6. So sorry . . . I transposed letters in his name and can’t seem to correct it. His website:

  7. TJ Rebello says:

    Very solid. Distant Clouds is really beautiful.

  8. roy rossow says:

    beautiful work…found this when i was looking up ben aronson.

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