Mark Echtner, a South Park resident and Professor of Fine Art at Sinclair Community College is this month’s artist featured on the walls of Ghostlight Coffee, located at 1201 Wayne Avenue.
How did you get started painting?
I’ve been painting pretty much my entire life. I come from a family of Artists, designers, and Architects and from a very early age my innate drive toward art was fostered and it was clear I would go into some form of the arts. As I went through high school and college, fine art and painting in particular became my medium of choice and through Grad School I found a love for teaching.
Describe your style:
My work is primarily figurative. This particular body of work uses highly saturated color and embraces the random lines from the initial gesture to incorporate a degree of expressive abstraction. I have always looked to Fauvism (and Matisse) as well as the German Expressionists for inspiration, and with this series I have also been looking to the early work of De Kooning.
What inspires you to paint?
I work from my head and from memory and the imagery I paint is inspired by the people around me and daily life. This series was initially going to be solitary figures broken down into line and shape, but the work evolved into quiet narratives of our daily interactions which brought content to the series. As far as the process goes – I have found that just continuously painting as a daily part of my routine keeps me inspired.
Finish this sentence. When people see a display of my painting I want people to:
When people see this series I want them to relate to it on a personal level, and perhaps become more aware of the positive, but ordinary daily moments that we often miss.
What else would you like people to know?
My work is currently featured at Ghostlight Coffee now through the month of June and I will be showing 20 paintings at the Sinclair Community College Burnell Roberts Triangle Gallery from August 14 – September 19