Variety of Elements Churning in the Mix in Eric Wert’s Oil Paintings.
Eric Wert is a talented painter currently residing in Portland, Oregon. His still life work shows incredible attention to detail and texture while the subjects themselves represent a balance between beauty and disorder. His work is currently being represented by Gallery Henoch in NYC and William Baczek Fine Arts in Northampton, MA.
There are a variety of elements churning in the mix in Wert’s oil paintings. The light and texture recall something of the still lifes of the Dutch painters of the 17th century, and the detail can seem almost overwhelming, like a 3-D effect.
“Much of my recent work, however, has been focused around intense color and swirling, all-over compositions. As a lover of spicy food, I thought about the fieriness of Southwestern cuisine, and how that might be conveyed visually. To find some common ground in the creative process, I asked the collector if he had ever eaten anything so spicy that he became delirious; perhaps that was what the piece could be about. He responded enthusiastically, and I knew that we were on the same page for the project.
Most of our collaboration was online, which was a new and interesting process for me. We live several thousand miles apart, but used eBay to look together for interesting props. He suggested objects based on their relationship to the narrative of the piece. For example, I’m fixated on shiny metal and glass; it would never have occurred to me to include the lava bowl used for grinding the guacamole. After several false starts, I started to understand how the subjects could mirror or contrast each other in interesting ways—the swirling design in the Damascus knife, played against the juicy pulp of the tomato, or the pebbled dark skin of the avocado reflected by the rough lava bowl”
Variety of Elements Churning in the Mix in Eric Wert’s Oil Paintings: