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Aaron Smith  Los Angeles, CA

* All images used with permission. Please do not distribute without first contacting the artist.

About Aaron

Aaron Smith is known for referencing art history in both his painting style and compositions. His new paintings’ color and surfaces are liberated of historic constraints. By taking such liberties with the images’ presentation, the artist transforms still life paintings into uniquely contemporary symbolic portraits. Derived from opulent objects; Gothic and Baroque sculpture originally created to spiritually inspire; the paintings strip the all-male characters of context, suspending them in an existential vacuum. His figurative oil paintings have earned him solo shows at some of LA and Chicago’s finer galleries.

Recommended by our guest curators

Matt Kennedy

Director, La Luz de Jesus Gallery

"I first met Aaron Smith a little over 20 years ago, when he applied for a job at the gallery where I was then an assistant manager. It was La Luz de Jesus Gallery, we hired him, and the rest is history. Aaron is one of the most gifted figurative painters alive. His ability to move from mannerist to symbolic while infusing elements of the Baroque and Rococo in pieces that practically drip with art history references that are impossibly contemporary is unique. He's also helped shape the current pop surrealist landscape as the Illustration Chair at Art Center. He's a rare example of an incredibly talented artist who is also a great teacher."

Aaron appears in the following Top 10 lists




10 of 21 reactions displayed

"It's a mammoth playground built of mountains, hills, lakes, edagkdfebdkk"

"i luv it...................i wonder the man looks very realastic............"

"I have been lucky to see some of Aaron's paintings in person and fell in love with his marks. His paintings are unique and he uses a fresh taste of history. I look at his work a lot, and his paintings just keep getting better! His color has a sensitive mood and his subject has an intimate quality. I will continue looking at his work to see what else he produces in the future."

"inspiring work! the generous paint application gives life to the often inanimate subjects. I love that Smith is not bias towards either the concept or the rendering, but gives equal attention to both aspects of the piece. really impressive work"

"Average at best. Done way too many times before. Doesn't stand out at all!"

"The latest paintings are great. I do not care what they are supposed to mean, they just look and feel great. This is how I like paintings."

"Wow...odd man out here. I know it isnt.. but it has a paint by number quality. Cant feel a depth...doesnt make make me reach. Tech talent is there but no ahhhh factor."

"I am not good at all at art, but I can still appreciate it. This piece exudes a light, and it almost seems like it will breathe. Very beautiful."

"This first image looks like my Dad mixed with Mark Ruffalo. Handsome!"

"painterly, worked canvas,ideas, esoteric antiquity, volumetric with shading and light, grotesqueness del grotto, tinges of the passion, radical cropping,figurative (and floral), good use of color: background colors stay in the background no matter the hue, beautiful passages of color [the nose socket of the skull is turquoise] the hue and the value of the color is right then he pushes it. art about art history"

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