LES REKER Landscape Painter
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Seeking the Tranquil in Forest and Stream
The intimate relationship with nature which Les Reker defines in his views of the landscape emerges as the artist's search for tranquility. Though concerned with the essential of description, the paintings transcend verisimilitude, transporting the viewer to a feeling of place as well as a comprehension of the power of nature. Painted en plein air, on site, the paintings reflect the artist’s philosophical encounter with the macrocosm as he maintains an adherence to the visual information before him.
A realist artist since his graduate school days at Queens College of the City University of New York, Reker has concentrated his attention on the close observation of nature as discussed by Emerson and Thoreau in the 19th century, whose impact on the tradition of American landscape painting arose as the Hudson River School. Its artistic leader, Thomas Cole, left a legacy to the 20th century, favoring the particular and the specific over the visionary or the imaginary. In this tradition and spirit, Reker’s landscapes make note of both the size and the feeling of their creation.
Reker has found, through a philosophical inquiry and exploration of nature, a new comprehension of the intuitive construction of the landscape when immersed in its presence. In his smaller works, as well as his larger exhibition pieces, there exists a framework for an understanding of the commitment an artist may find in the association of experience and intellect. For the viewer there is pure delight―the familiar resonance of the forest and stream playing quiet harmonies in the paintings of Les Reker.
Dr. Valerie Livingston, Director
Lore Degenstein Gallery