Jerry Fre­sia

International Artist - - Contents - Jerry Fre­sia

As­sem­blage of sen­sa­tions

The method I use came to me from Amer­i­can artists liv­ing in late-19th­cen­tury Paris, such as John Singer Sar­gent and Robert Henri, who in turn passed it down to painter-teach­ers in the U.S. such as Robert Brack­man. I stud­ied with Wil­liam Schultz, a stu­dent of Brack­man, in his stu­dio for a num­ber of years.

My ap­proach to paint­ing re­quires that I do not see the sub­ject be­fore me, ex­cept in­so­far as it is an as­sem­blage of sen­sa­tions—the sen­sa­tions of line and color. Line and color are sen­sual pieces into which my ex­pe­ri­ence is bro­ken. I then move back and forth be­tween line and color through­out the process, putting the pieces back to­gether ac­cord­ing to my whimsy as I’m car­ried along.

The point of paint­ing, for me, is to es­cape into a realm of per­cep­tion where won­der is re­vi­tal­ized. I open my­self to na­ture know­ing it is alive. For ex­am­ple, while I do paint the

To Rest Awhile, oil, 152½ x 121½ cm (60 x 48")

This was a very warm af­ter­noon on Lake Como. First, I loved the warm at­mo­spheric color (with hints of quinacridone) or tonal­ity that bathed ev­ery­thing. And yet amid this warm tonal­ity were bright greens, yel­lows, blues and or­ange pieces of color. The en­ergy of color moved me. The paint­ing is large so I was able to use a No. 10 flat fil­bert brush to put down thick im­pasto strokes of color, swirling over a soft un­der­paint­ing. I wanted to achieve a feel­ing of lush­ness and vi­brancy, the live­li­ness of na­ture at the peak of sum­mer.

Pescallo on a May Day, oil, 89 x 89 cm (35 x 35")

I loved the as­pect of look­ing down into one of Lake Como’s many har­bors, as well as the vast ex­panse of the blue wa­ter and the coun­ter­point of or­ange tile roofs of nearby build­ings. The chal­lenge for me was to get that sense of vol­ume, as the lake ex­tended more than a mile to the other side. This paint­ing re­quired about four one-and-a-half-hour sit­tings. I needed all that time to ac­quaint my­self with the ever-chang­ing sub­tle col­ors of the at­mos­phere and the re­la­tion­ships of blues flut­ter­ing un­der­neath.

light, I would never say that I’m cap­tur­ing the light. Rather, it is more telling to say that the light cap­tures me. This means I must stay in the mo­ment and never think about where the paint­ing is go­ing. The process will pro­duce the work. This is key, for my pur­pose is to feel larger and more alive so I am able to im­part a life to the can­vas. I need to get a rush. And if I can get to the rush, the paint­ing will fol­low.

oil, 63½ x 63½ cm (25 x 25") One morn­ing on Lake Como, I was struck by how the sparkling light of nearby hills con­trasted with soft vel­vety col­ors of dis­tant moun­tains. Not hav­ing much time be­fore the ris­ing sun would change ev­ery­thing, I quickly...

Cap­tured by a Warm Morn­ing Breeze,

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