Contemporary realism -
Bo Bartlett, "The Promised Land," 2015, oil on linen, 88 x 120 in., private collection; featured in the July/August 2020 issue of Fine Art Connoisseur magazine

A letter from Peter Trippi on communicating with artists during Covid and more, in this preview of the July/August 2020 issue of Fine Art Connoisseur Magazine.

Fine Art Connoisseur Magazine
Featured on the cover of the July/August 2020 issue: Nikolai Blokhin (b. 1968), “Old Harlequin” (detail), 2020, oil on canvas, 41.25 x 29.5 in.

Supporting Each Other

Well, 2020 has been like no other year, and it’s only half over. Here’s hoping that summer and autumn will treat us all better.

Like every field, art has been clobbered, and we at Fine Art Connoisseur have been keeping in touch with colleagues everywhere to learn how they’re doing at this extraordinary time. We have been inspired by readers’ ingenuity and determination, and we salute you for sticking to your aesthetic guns.

In May we decided to look closer by recording three lively Zoom conversations under the heading Contemporary Realist Art in Lockdown: What’s Going Well? What’s Not? Co-hosting these one-hour touch-bases with me was the New York City-based artist Katie G. Whipple. All three programs premiered online in early June and can be enjoyed on our YouTube channel here.

Our objective was to find out how nine remarkable colleagues have kept things going. The first program featured artists Alia El-Berani and Mario A. Robinson with the dealer Laura Grenning (Grenning Gallery, Long Island); the second welcomed artists Zoe Dufour and César Meza with Betty Standish (Wethersfield Academy for the Arts, Connecticut); and the third involved artists Dina Brodsky and Richie Carter with dealer Robert Simon (Robert Simon Fine Arts, New York City).

Katie and I learned a lot and send our renewed thanks to these nine professionals, who thoroughly demonstrated their ongoing commitment to making, teaching, and promoting superb contemporary realist art. Their observations ranged from detailed to big-picture, from handy tactics to the pitfalls looming ahead. Overall, it was a joy to reconnect and hear how everyone is coping.

Equally esteemed colleagues are at the Art Renewal Center (ARC); in this issue we have highlighted what’s new with them, and for our artist readers, please note that ARC is accepting entries to its 15th International ARC Salon Competition until August 14. To see its prospectus and to enter, visit

I am highlighting the Zoom conversations and the ARC Salon because it is clear that digital communications will remain essential post-COVID-19. Everyone at Fine Art Connoisseur believes in this paper magazine and will keep it moving forward, but today’s realities also make it crucial for our community to keep in touch online. Our parent, Streamline Publishing, is glad to offer an array of outlets that serve our field; just visit and join us.

Many thanks as ever for your collegiality, and be well until we meet again.

Fine Art Connoisseur MagazineDownload the July/August 2020 issue here, or subscribe to Fine Art Connoisseur today so you never miss an issue.

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