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ADVANCING THE ARTS ACROSS MARYLAND

SAM LACOMBE

SAM LACOMBE

Artist Work

L.A. Vista
2004-2005
Oil on canvas
24" x 36"
Senator
2018
Oil on Panel
36x24 inches
Belvedere
2019
Gouache on w/c paper
6 x 6 inches
Tochterman
2016
Gouache on w/c paper
6 x 6 inches
Hell
2012
Gouache
6 x 6 inches

Artist Information

County
Baltimore City
Artistic Category

Visual Arts

MSAC Individual Artist Award (IAA)
2019

Artist Statement

My goal is to make emotional paintings. Part of that is derived from my approach to representation. I attempt to give the viewer all of the information observed in my subjects, without the presumption to edit, or take short cuts. It is not my intention to make trompe-l’oeil paintings that concentrate on superficial textural details. Instead, I idealize and attempt to organize my paintings in a highly formal matter to maximize the emotional impact. The richness of information is there to slow down the process of seeing the painting, to provide a sumptuous feast for the viewer’s eye, and as a challenge to myself. I choose subject matter for its possibility to be emotionally charged, and I look for subjects that will be challenging to paint. What I have found in urban architecture and signage is the excuse for bold colors, massive volumes, pattern, and strong light and shadow. I see in these forms the metaphor of human existence, in the same way that many of Edward Hopper’s paintings are about the rooms, not the figures in them. I often think of my paintings as court portraits, some imbued with the haughty dignity of a Velazquez, some the merry camaraderie of a Hals. Each of my paintings is designed to be like a unique piece of sculpture: self-contained, formal, physical. The subjects and forms themselves must be elevated beyond their descriptive or literal qualities to create a painting that is greater than the sum of its parts.