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 Kevin Bean  (1957 - )

About: Kevin Bean
 

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Lived/Active: California/Illinois      Known for: painting

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Ad Code: 4
AskART Artist
Geometric Abstraction (07.111), oil on canvas, 42" x 50", 2007
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Kevin Bean recieved his Masters Degree as Valedictorian from the University of California, Berkeley in 1995.

In a recent series of paintings based on old black & white family photos, Kevin Bean shares his history by depicting his family and their experiences. The work references a tradition of figurative painting and then moves beyond. The paintings are conversations of light and color, which reference the common experience of family photo's and associated memories.  In 2008 Bean began to explore color relationships through brightly hued abstract works.

In the catalog essay, Jeff Kelley wrote: "What Bean sees in his family photographs is a language of body postures, self-conscious poses, unconscious gestures caught in mid-sweep, bodies conforming to the relaxing curves of patio furniture, or standing upright and probably saying "cheese."… As a painter, Bean pares down the naturalism of the photographs by brushing out faces, letting hues bleed between figure and ground, and generalizing details into soft liquid passages. The result is a kind of emotional semaphore. He also paints an occasional luminous, colorful spot, something like a snowflake, falling faintly upon the scene as if from another season, perhaps from the winter of adulthood reflecting back upon so many forgotten summers… It is in this sense that Bean's paintings are less precise, but more clear, than his family photographs."

Submitted by: Adam Beck


This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Kevin Bean has articulated his own description of his works, referencing them as conversations between light and color.  Bean is interested in exploring color, composition, surface handling and the painting process itself.  His subjects may be serious or silly, or a combination thereof.  They provide an insight into the artist’s sense of humor as well as his appreciation for the historical and awareness of the contemporary.

Bean's abstract works may be atmospheric, geometric or otherwise, while most of the figurative pieces are photo based - yet not photographic.  In his figurative series, Bean shares his history by depicting his family and their experiences.  The work references a tradition of figurative painting and then moves beyond.  The paintings are conversations of light and color, which reference the common experience of family photos and associated memories.

Bean completed undergraduate studies at Maine College of Art in Portland, Maine.  He has lived in San Francisco over twenty years, completing his MFA at the University of California Berkeley in 1995.  He has been teaching painting and drawing for the past seven years at Stanford University.  He has exhibited work nationally.

Submitted by John C. Morris, ArtZone 461 Gallery

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