Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Sean Cheetham

I can't remember how I randomly discovered the stunning portrait art of Sean Cheetham, but I cannot get over how moved I am by his talent. His models are generally tattooed, hard-edged looking girls, but there is no cliche in the poses or environments he paints them in. I e-mailed him asking if he was having any east coast shows, and he was kind enough to start up a dialogue with me about his artwork.

I was particularly taken by two of his paintings that feature the same model. Click the pictures to see full-scale images on my Flickr account. See the details in the hands, jewelery and tattoos. Really incredible:

Here is a link to Sean's stark blog, which is simply a place where he posts a 20 or so of his painting, without any commentary. Besides the two I display above, I'm also impressed by Snake Charmer (check out the detail in the background), Front Door (I love how it evokes the feeling of jail, and Bone Amie (warning: NSFW).

An excerpt from his e-mail in response to my question about the first painting, Black Lamb:

That painting sold before the show went up. In fact, all the paintings I've done of that person sold that way. I had a waiting list at the gallery I was represented by just for paintings of her. She's a good friend of mine and I'm actually going to do some more paintings of her soon. That painting was just done as part of a small bunch of works in which I decided to paint the same girls I always paint, but with jackets on. I was becoming the punk chick/tattooed lady/half dressed painter and wanted to rebel against it. I wanted to see how my collectors would react. They still bought everything. I liked the painting when it was done... still do. The collector lives in LA so I can see it if I miss it. I painted it from photo reference, as I do with most all of my work. I still paint from life for practice and as a teacher for demonstrations.

Here's a Youtube clip of Sean painting a portrait - 10 hours sped up into 10 minutes. Pretty cool.

And, here is the web site of the model in the two pictures, Chantal Menard. She is an artist, photographer, jeweler, poet and provider of body modification (think extreme piercings).


Anonymous said...

Wow, he's an amazing talent! Thanks for posting on that. What do his paintings run? Amy McGill Higgins

Rob said...

Hi Amy. I'm glad you share my appreciation for his work. I'm not sure what you are asking. If you're asking how much are his paintings, I don't know. He says there is a waiting list for his work, so I imagine it goes for big buck. This is a total guess, but I wouldn't be surprised if Black Lamb (which he told me is 24" tall) went for between $10,000 - $15,000.

If you're asking where does he show his paintings, it sounds like all of the ones displayed on his site are sold, so only holds shows when he has a new crop of paintings, which he told me he's working on. And, that the show would be on the west coast.

Rambling Canuck said...

Excellent stuff. Like a modern day Rockwell. So real.

Anonymous said...

Oops, by "run" I did mean price -- I figured it was the big bucks but just curious. Still amazing work! AMY

Rob said...

Amy, UPDATE: one of his paintings, called Korea Town, is going for $25,000 at an LA gallery. I'm so happy for Sean that he's commanding such a premium price. He deserves it.

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