Enigma, Paintings 18 x 24"

Quintessence: The Mysterious Women of Dianne Bernstein

Though the tradition of painting is strong and storied in her family, Dianne Bernstein did not take it up herself until an open-air class in Fiesole exposed her to the medium. It was there, in the Tuscan countryside, that Bernstein’s passion for the arts was stoked and brought to a steady blaze. Earlier studies in classical drawing had provided her with an artistic foundation, and upon her return to the United States, Bernstein delved into figure painting under the tutelage of Miroslav Antić, among others.

Bernstein’s acrylic portraits are painted on linen. Her strokes are choppy and the figures seem, at times, unfinished, a stylistic choice that imbues them with an enigmatic power. Bernstein mostly paints women, both real and imagined, calling them her "sources of inspiration." By painting these subjects she hopes to capture their essence, the flash of power that motivates her. "My women have a mystery about them," Bernstein says. However, this mystery doesn’t come from aloofness - that calm, cool, disaffected manner employed by fashion spreads. Rather, Bernstein’s figures are emotive and highly unique, each with a story to tell.

Chief among Bernstein’s inspirations is her mother, a painter, whose painting sessions she frequently observed, and whose passing served as the impetus for her to pick up the brush. "Often she was unaware of my presence in the room," Bernstein says. "She seemed transported by the act of laying paint on canvas."

Great art has always been a vehicle for the mind and the spirit. It transports artists and viewers alike, often to places new and unknown. Artists have long recognized the power of femininity, but society as a whole often falls short in this regard. Bernstein’s art, in this sense, plays a vital role. It is a celebration of womanhood, of mystery and the human spirit.

Dianne Bernstein will be participating in an exhibition at Agora Gallery that will run from May 19th to June 9th, with an opening reception on May 21st from 6-8. For more information about the artist, you can visit: http://www.agora-gallery.com/artistpage/Dianne_Bernstein.aspx. To purchase work: http://www.art-mine.com/artistpage/dianne_bernstein.aspx

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