Using energetic, feathery brushstrokes, along with skillful layering of colors, Michael Klein continues to enchant audiences with his latest oils.
 
Helping to lead the charge in the continued revival of representational painting is accomplished artist Michael Klein, whose still life paintings feature in a current solo exhibition at Maxwell Alexander Gallery in Culver City, California. Fifteen paintings, showcasing predominantly floral subjects, compose the show.
 


Michael Klein, “Orange Roses,” oil, 12 x 15 in. (c) Maxwell Alexander Gallery 2015

 
A gorgeous play between movement and quiet stillness characterizes Klein’s paintings well, especially “White Peonies.” Simple in subject but impactful in treatment, “White Peonies” displays a loose but controlled application of paint. The flowers show areas in which Klein has employed thicker paints, imbuing the subjects with a tactile texture that enlivens and activates the surface. The dark, unpopulated background allows the vibrancy and beauty of the flowers to harness the viewer’s extended attention.
 


Michael Klein, “Vanity Fades,” oil, 8 x 16 in. (c) Maxwell Alexander Gallery 2015


Michael Klein, “Fruit and Bowl,” oil, 12 x 18 in. (c) Maxwell Alexander Gallery 2015
 

“His passion is to depict an accurate representation of our human experience interacting with the created order around us,” says the artist’s website. “By poetically blending pigments from the earth, adding oil, and his inborn artistic capability he recreates the world around us and injects his personal spirit into each piece throughout the process.” Indeed, human experience comes to the fore in “Vanity Fades,” a magnetic painting that gives a nod to the Vanitas theme made popular in still life painting during the 16th and 17th centuries. A prominent skull confronts the viewer immediately at the center of the composition, reminding us of our mortality. The skull rests in front of a guitar, globe, books, papers, and an antler, emphasizing the transient nature of all earthly goods and pursuits.
 
“Michael Klein: Still” opened on September 5.
 
To learn more, visit Maxwell Alexander Gallery.
 
This article was featured in Fine Art Today, a weekly e-newsletter from Fine Art Connoisseur magazine. To start receiving Fine Art Today for free, click here.
 

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Andrew Webster
Andrew Webster is the former Editor of Fine Art Today and worked as an editorial and creative marketing assistant for Streamline Publishing. Andrew graduated from The University of North Carolina at Asheville with a B.A. in Art History and Ceramics. He then moved on to the University of Oregon, where he completed an M.A. in Art History. Studying under scholar Kathleen Nicholson, he completed a thesis project that investigated the peculiar practice of embedded self-portraiture within Christian imagery during the 15th and early 16th centuries in Italy.

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