Gibbons' boxes are his environments, his still lifes and his visual voice. They speak to both him and his audience. Some figures confront while others recede, some welcome your gaze and others outright reject you. The limited color, subject and space create a powerfully focused and iconic image that expresses the artist's prejudices, apprehensions, aspirations and ideals. Gibbons draws themes and images from classical painters like Michelangelo, Ingres and Neo, and Classicist, Jacques-Louis David.
This series was inspired by the artist's 2004 trip to Paris and days spent at the Louvre. Gibbons had been painting the classical figure for years within minimal environments that would often enter the negative space of the form. The box has become the anchor for his message and the framework of his art. It is the package that separates his figures from our world and his art from other modern painting masters. Keep in mind, these works are nearly life-size, and in black and white oil.
"As we figuratively create boxes to put people in … I create figures and put them in boxes." – E. Gibbons
Though his studio is the Firehouse Gallery, direct sales are not taken here but through the galleries that represent his work. Though the bulk of his work is black and white, he does work in color and in various media including oils, acrylics, watercolors and inks.
The Firehouse Gallery is one of Bordentown's earliest firehouses. A Victorian structure built in 1886, it first underwent renovation by Juanita Crosby who purchased the structure in 1969. Mr. E. Gibbons then bought the firehouse in 1995 and in 2003 converted it into the home and studio it is now.
From 1995 to 2004 the gallery had hosted many exhibitions of local and international artists, poetry and music events and even some evenings of opera. Due to the expanding popularity of the owner's work, however, the Gallery became the exclusive studio for showcasing his artwork beginning in 2005. His work is now showing internationally and has been featured in several major art publications like ArtNEWS magazine.
Gibbons' main focus is in three main genres of art. Foremost are his classical figurative studies in oil paint reminiscent of classical paintings of the 1800s with a dash of neo-classical drama. This would also include formal portraits commissioned by private collectors and corporate headquarters. He also works in a loose style known to Matisse fans as "Automatic Drawings" or blind line drawings with forced color on occasion. Gibbons also dabbles in experimental Polaroid photography. He produced a popular series based on the Wizard of Oz, on display at the Judy Garland Museum in Grand Rapids, Minnesota.
As an important player in both the American Revolution and Underground Railroad, Bordentown is one of New Jersey's oldest historic cities and renowned for its wonderful history in the arts.
Thomas Payne, Prince Philip of Spain (Brother of Napoleon) and Clara Barton all made Bordentown their home. This "little city with a lot of charm", boasts several galleries and fine restaurants and is gently hugged by the Delaware River. More information about this historic city can be found at www.downtownbordentown.com.
More Artists at my website: http://www.elisarolle.com/, My Ramblings/Art
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