Charlie Hewitt; John Mandel

Brata Group Gallery; Max Hutchinson Gallery

While the so-called photographic realism of painters like Leslie, Close, and Pearlstein is sometimes Surreal or Expressionistic, this is primarily the result of the large scale, the slightly distorted vantage point, or the bend of the lens in the photograph from which a painting is taken. Images are still observed from nature and left intact. The contemporary figurative painters who choose to sidestep straight representation for the imaginary reorganization of images seem to adopt the historical conventions of Expressionism and Surrealism. Charlie Hewitt at the Brata Gallery, for example, borrows from German and Viennese Expressionism for his distended forms and empassioned brushstrokes. John Mandel, at the Max Hutchinson Gallery, finds a model in academic Surrealism—precise realism is combined with peculiar perspective and the displacement of elements into strange environments.


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