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This â‚Źrnerging drtist is d.edicated to quality, craftsrnanship arud

traditiondl

style. he inspiration

for

Eric Hammert new exhibition at Arcadia Fine Arts in New York comes

from those shows

that

preceded it.

"I

come into each new

series as a reinvention of my previous work, it's a personal

ladder that I keep building," says Hammer. "I develop my

paintings from what comes before, Everything. \7hat I loved and hated From previous

shows

all come together to

develop my current work."

Hammer's new show involves portraits oFwomen in uhar he:ees a: small, intimatc

moments that people usually

dont

share

with one another.

"There is a sense of humanity in these works," says Hammer. "Something

quier and gentle, a lrroment immortalized

riny

in

an

instant. And there is no eye contact, so it gives you that sense that you

dont know

if

you should look at it or not."

Hammer

re

fers to

his

image: as modcrn day saints

and believes that

the

anonymity of the models in the works reinforces his beliefs

of them serving as a sort of symbol or icon of something larger than life. SarNr No. 43,

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"I'm painting women that no one knows, so I'm using them as an ideal," says Hammer. "You can never get away from the feeling that this is a person,

and you

re

alize the power

another person has, and how an expression can be a source o[por,rer. People usually ignoLe

the most important thing about anothcr person."

Hammel began

his

education as a painter at the Museum School of Fine Art in

Boston, but soon found out that what he was learning had no impecr on his painring

career. Hc soon

became

disenchanted with the style of painting he was being taught and decided to leave and learn on his own. "School should be a place

where you gct rhe tools you

need ro become a good painter, and every ar-tist rebels against what they are being taught, but at the school we were being taught rebellion, so

how do you rebel againrr rebellion?" says Hammer. "You do so by painting with quality, with craftsmanship and with a tladitional style. I was angry at whar I was secing and wanted to do something in the opposite direction."

And this quality is what Hammer would like people to look for in his new show. "I want people to see rhe

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craft involved

in the work," says Hammer. "I want them

dusry in the studio."

to be able to understand

something that

the language ofpainting, to learn all the words. "You don't need

a text to

appreciate these

paintings, what

I

wanted to say isnt supported by theory. I want them to see the qualiry, to think that it reminds them of somebody beautiful. I want

to

produce something they love, not something that gets

For Hammer, painting

hours a day, everyday of is

is a

chore, he works at

something that everyday of his life.

"I'll

be doing this forever," says Hammer. "There is an incredible amount of intensiry that goes with my work, a lot

of blood and

torment. I'm never satisfied with what I do. I'm constantly working and reworking.

I do this sixteen

my life." Hammer believes that his

paintings lose

a little

in

translation from a painting to a printed image, so he thinks they need to be seen in person

to appreciate their true color and complexity. "In person, there is much depth to them because the darks are glazes ofblack paint,

but to print that

"depth"

all midrangehappy and gray. Photos cant show the full spectrum that makes them

oil painting can. A photo of my work will always only be

hint of the true

a

painting. They are proud paintings, but shy when a camera comes out," says Hammer. O For a direct linh to tbe exhibiting gallery go to


The Gallery Says .

.

"'$7hat Eric's paintings have is soUL AND TRUTH. He is able to strip away the cosmetic, physical beauty of the women who pose for him and reveal the raw, emotional truth of the subject."

-

Steue

Diamant, Director, Arcadia Gallery


Eric Hammer - American Art Collector - Noverber 2005