W. CHARLES NOWELL
Charles Nowell is a mid-career artist that has attracted the patronage of collectors from around the country for the past twenty-eight years. While his early work as a traditional still-life painter solidified his reputation, Nowell has never been afraid to experiment with different styles and techniques. In his 26th season at the Blue Heron Gallery, Nowell has presented us a bold new body of work. Feeling constrained by the limits of the still-life and representational work in general, he began experimenting with abstract painting in 2015 and committed himself to pursuing it full time early in 2017. The result is a stunning group of elegant contemporary abstract paintings. The Blue Heron Gallery is proud to represent this adventurous and creative leap that Nowell has chosen. We hope you enjoy it as well.
My goal in creating this new work was to instill a passion into the painting in the hope of getting an emotional response from the viewer. While I have always been inspired by the visual world, imagery not normally seen with the naked eye provided the impetus for these paintings. Deep space photos, satellite imagery, and microscopic pictures motivated the creative spark to produce these canvases. The process involved is both intense and meditative. Starting with simple light and dark patterns, the paintings emerge almost as if by a force beyond me. I frequently stare at them a few hours after completion, and wonder where they came from. My overall intention is to create a diverse group of paintings ranging from the subtle to the dynamic. They are intended to excite the eye, stimulate the mind and relax the soul.
A Note on Technique
The paintings begin with raw canvas to which I apply a textured gesso using a sponge or brush. Once dry, I apply layers of acrylic paint to build up the surface as the composition emerges. In some works, I use a sand or glass bead medium to build texture. When the design solidifies I begin to work details frequently using metallic and iridescent paint that creates added depth. The use of a masking technique adds a further element to some paintings. Finally, they are finished with a coat of gloss medium to give them a sheen and seal and preserve them.