- Georgi Andonov
- Michael Azgour
- E Tyler Burton
- Jane Burton
- Jill Daniels
- Paul Ecke
- Oliver Hilton
- Craig Kerrecoe
- Steven Larson
- John Lyons
- Anji Main
- Luis Marzoratti
- Donna McGinnis
- Geoff Morten
- Mariel Polinotto
- James Shilaimon
Paul Ecke (b. 1953)
Paul Ecke is a mid-career painter of contemporary non-figurative and figurative works on canvas and panel. His works are an amalgam of color, texture and movement achieved through application of oil and acrylic paints to canvas, all applied by brush, hand and even trowel. The results are magnificent, colorful, thought and emotion-provoking images that convey the inner strength, conviction and complexity of the artist.
Paul Ecke was educated at California State University, Fullerton, receiving degrees in art with emphasis in ceramic arts and painting. His classical training taught him to represent the human form. His skill as a ceramicist affects his paintings, giving them a three-dimensional quality through the application of textural media to his works on canvas.
Regardless of the subject, Paul Ecke’s work continues to evoke deep soulful responses from viewers who often find themselves mesmerized in front of Ecke’s canvases. People are drawn by the expressive brushstrokes, colors and textures that have become his signature.
With his formal education complete, Ecke pursued a career teaching art in the California public school system. He headed the entire district art program for Centralia School District of Buena Park, California. Ecke enjoyed his nine years as an educator but longed to pursue a full-time career in the creation of his own art.
Paul Ecke has been a full-time contributor to the contemporary art world since 1985. His works are in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Manila, Philippines and the Daytona, Florida’s Museum of Arts and Science. He has shown in galleries in New York, Chicago, San Diego, Palm Springs, Florida, the Philippines and Bali, Indonesia. His works are in many private and corporate collections including those of Universal Studios, Jimmy Z Sportswear, Taco Bell, Flojet Corporation, Carsey Warner Productions and Dionne Warwick’s collection. Works by Paul Ecke are already slated to be part of endowment of contemporary paintings and graphics art to London’s Museum of Contemporary Art. Paul Ecke’s has been the featured artist in numerous art publications.
Ecke’s compositions are based on abstractions. Each painting’s quality lied in is power to suggest many rich and varied analogies, however diverse they may be. The works are rich in inspired concepts that follow a stream of thought has always fascinated the artist. With his series “Quadrants”, Ecke continues to examine the abstract notions of time, space, thought, the philosophy of color and their relationship to the human experience. The group of paintings assembled for this exhibition, “Quadrants”, deals directly with four stages of man’s spiritual development. The viewer can see throughout this series a delineation of the works into panels or segments that make up an entire piece. Like the stages of our spiritual development: “The Athlete”, “The Warrior”, the Statesman” and ultimately “the Spirit” these works reflect life’s journey and weaves together the tapestry of our life experience. The result, sensually balanced, vibrantly colored works that exude a richness of texture and depth of creativity.
In his series “Fractals,” Ecke explores the complexities of human inter-relationships in the form of the line, pattern and color. Ecke addresses the timeless journey of the eternal acting as a shamen. He in turn allows us to confront the passages of birth, life and death. In nature as well as mathematics, fractals are geometric objects that in their basest form contain self-similar structures that are repeated in the whole. Thus, everything comes from and is composed of fractals. For, Ecke the fractal becomes his meditative mantra and his path-road into this life experience. From the child to the man, life is composed of repeating relationships and inter-connecting journeys. His stripes transform into intersections and his circles become cycles of consciousness. Each artwork is created through applying multi-layers of paint and media and then stripping them away. Thus, even in his process, Ecke demonstrates that all can be deconstructed and constructed again from simple elements. With each piece the viewer is then asked to engage in their own personal dialogue of their roadmap.
In contrast, Ecke’s series “Men Behind Gates” is a distinctive departure from his more abstract style and represents a return to his classical figurative training. Maturity and sophistication born from years of artistic expression, present themselves in this suite. “Men Behind Gates” is the revelation of man in life’s emotional struggles – struggles imposed by society’s restraints as well as the self-imposed struggles that manifest themselves. Within each work is present the loose form of a red gate. As a physical structure the gate becomes a doorway that conceals the pressures that inhibit and transform man’s evolution in Western culture. The color red symbolizes safety and security. In contrast red is also the color of power and passion. From an early age boys are reared to be strong and silent, to provide and to concur. As they develop into adults these seeds grow within the men they are to become. Expression and emotion are considered weaknesses and often lie beneath the surface of a man’s character, never allowed to surface. Ecke strips away the traditional boundaries of these facades by stripping away layers of paint and revealing the purity and rawness of the male nude form. This man is the culmination of the weight of the world around him but also triumphant in his acceptance of his own strength and vulnerability. He comes forth from the black shroud behind him. He is almost carved from stone as Ecke creates a figure sculptural and prominent. In the end, each possesses their essence of the self. With “Men Behind Gates”, Ecke allows the viewer to envision the possibilities of a society that embraces the uniqueness of the person beyond their sex.
Due to be released is Ecke’s “Passions and Addictions” suite. With these works the canvases are built up, scratched back, painterly and loosely sketched. Yet unlike Warhol’s “Campbell Soup Cans” as Pop or Duchamp’s “Urinal” as Dada, Ecke brings a contemporary voice to the context of art. The audience as consumer is asked to be a participant as well as be judged and judge others. In his painting “Tall or Venti”, Starbucks coffee cups are patterned along the canvas. The logo is elevated to icon. The question is asked “How is Starbucks equated with happiness?” When did consumerism and big business dictate our morals? When did the path to enlightenment become an end to the sale of a product? Ever more deeply, Ecke explores the complexities and dichotomies of living in a capitalistic culture. How does one reconcile a company putting out of small business yet at the same time providing expansive employee benefits? How does one justify global prosperity and find fault with eradicating cultures? Ecke examines this fine line we walk every day, a line most tend to ignore as long as it feeds our passions and addictions.