Hyper-Realism at Southport Gallery

A new book by hyper-realist artist Robert Jackson has inspired a gallery show of work by eight the nation’s leading artists in that genre.

“Not So Still Life” opens at Southport Gallery in Southport, Conn. on Friday, Nov. 14.

“What’s fun about mounting a show like this is that they’re real crowd-pleasers, with meticulous technique – and whimsy,” says gallery owner Sissy Biggers.

Jackson will be on hand to sign copies of Behind the Easel: The Unique Voices of 20th Century Contemporary Realist Painters, his coffee-table book that features four of the artists in the show.

“The book is about the hyper-realists that he considers the best working today,” she says. “They’re his colleagues – it’s kind of like a club.”

His paintings will be among the 50 on view and for sale, just in time for the holiday season. Some are large enough to fill a wall, while others are jewel-box in size.

“A large Scott Fraser can sell for $45,000 to $50,000, so we asked him to go a little smaller so they can go into collections,” she says. “The smallest is 11 x 14 inches and some are as big as 24 x 42 inches.”

They’re all about object realism, though, with subject matter that’s almost too true to life.

“It’s the best trompe l’oeil, or trick of the eye, in the business,” she says. “You could almost pick these things right off the canvases.”

The idea is to impart an understanding of the talent it takes to create paintings that are this precise, intriguing and whimsical, all at same time.

“There’s so much happening in each picture – Bob Jackson has a little bit of a joke in every painting and his titles are a lot of fun,” she says. “He makes inanimate objects real, and can give a piece of fruit full character.”

The show runs through Christmas Eve.

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