Artist of the moment…..Christoph Ruckhaberle

Christoph Ruckhaberle is a wonderful painter born in Pfaffenhofen an der Ilm, Germany in the year 1972. Ruckhaberle works with the figure, but a whimsical and playful manner. As a paper collage enthusiast its amazing to see how many different textures he creates in his work. Recently the artist has become bolder in his color choices.

If I were to compare his work to another artist it would be Kenne Gregoire of Holland. Both have a master control of color and both draw from unusual perspectives. Below is a painting by Gregoire showing his choice of painting directly above the subject. kg

Price range information: Original works range from $20,000 to $100,000.

In this clip we visit a show with our fellow artist friend James Kalm:

For his collegiate education Ruckhaberle attended the California Institute of the Arts. The artist went on to do post graduate work at a college located in Leipzig, Germany where he earned a masters of fine arts degree.

Ruckhaberle  is in galleries in Paris, New York, Los Angeles, and London.


Artist of the moment…Julio Larraz…..

Julio Larraz is another well known artist that was born in Havana, Cuba in the year 1944. His father owned was the publisher of a newspaper. Larraz’s painting style is wonderful mix of realism and fantasy. I enjoy looking at his art as he is able to push color as  you would expect a Caribbean artist to do. By that I mean I learned as a painter that if I had a red rose, to grey down the red and only use straight from the tube red where I wanted the viewers eye to go. Larraz lives in where maximum color exists everywhere! From the brightly colored fruit in the trees to the flesh tones of the beach and bright pink and bright yellow houses!  Every artist should go to the Caribbean if no other reason than to experience life with an abundance of color everywhere.

A great clip here! Here we see the Larraz’s painting the Tropic of Cancer, go up for auction at Sotheby’s.

Quick selection of the artist’s wide variety of painting from figures and surrealistic works to still life paintings.

In 1961 his family left Cuba and came to the United States. The family lived in Miami, Washington D.C. and then New York city. Over little more than five years time he was able to study with such master painters (in modern times not when he studied with them) Burton Silverman, Aaron Shickler, and David Levine. Its easy to see some influences the artist had from David Levine who was a well known caricaturist working in pen and ink for the most part. Larraz became known as a caricaturist when he was beginning his artistic career.

Here is a wonderful example of David Levine’s caricature style, the celebrity in case you can’t tell, is film director Woody Allen.


Aaron Shikler is a well known artist best known for his portraits. From his paintings I can see that he influenced Larraz on using black, or very dark tones close to it in his works which give them a different feeling of space. Very quiet and still. Below is a great example of Shikler’s style.


Larraz is included in the Boca Raton Museum of Art.

Larraz began working as a full time artist in 1967.

First solo exhibition in the United States took place in Washington D.C. in 1971.

Another artist who has a similar style at least in perspective in that this artist paints many times from views right above the subject. I have blogged about him before and he makes wonderful still lifes, his name is Kenne Gregoire. Here is an example of his above the subject viewpoint. This painting of a nude in bed reminds me a great deal of the painting sold by Larraz at Sotheby’s titled Tropic of Cancer.


Price range information:  Larraz is an old school artisan craftsman well schooled in many mediums from oils ranging from $30,000 to $360,000.  Pastels range from $10,000 to $40,000.

Watercolors range from $6,000 to $25,000. Not enough sales to make a judgement on prices for sculpture works.

Larraz lives and works out of Miami, Florida.

I enjoy this artist for his bright color palette and strong contrasting darks. Also a great technique to include views from above. For some art homework try a view from straight above your subject!

Keep learning!


Artist of the moment…. Kenne Gregoire….

A short interview with the artist in his native tongue, it is with English subtitles. He thinks acrylics are easier to paint with than oils.

Far better than I can do in the gallery this clip has many works of Kenne Gregoire set to music. PERFECT HARMONY!

The next few reports will be about artists working with the still life. When I first started my art journey I was bored out of my mind by the still life. But as an experienced viewer who has seen tens of thousands of images, I have grown quite fond of the still life. Lets take a look at some old masters as well as contemporary artists who have chosen to make the still life a large part of their portfolio.

Kenne Gregoire is a great artist and I think we all can learn how a picture changes when objects are lengthened. This can be a building as well as a glass or a piece of silverware. A fantastic tip I learned from the artist Paul Gruppe was to lean a straight object slightly backward to give it character and not make it seem more lively. If you lean the buildings forward it can look like the are falling to the viewer.

The artist works with both oils and acrylics and paints on board as well as linen.

The artist hails from the Netherlands and was born to a well known sculptor in Europe named Paul Gregoire. He attended school at the State Academy of Arts in Amsterdam finishing school in 1973.

He won a silver medal at an important art event called the Prix de Rome.

In 1976 he was invited by the Italian Minister of Culture to study abroad in Italy.

I enjoy the emotional state of his characters as well, very easy to interpret for the viewer. He also is a master of blending edges, which is sometimes difficult to do with acrylic paints. His wrinkles in clothes as well as the faces of elderly people are all done with a light touch which blends warm and cool colors making the characters more lifelike. The artist paints a grey toned image first, then piles color on top.

Another aspect to love about the artist’s work is his view of perspective. Often times he takes the birds eye view. Even something as simple as a coffee cup on a patterned tabletop can be exciting when seen from above.  The artist is highly skilled at developing different textures. From wood to velvet to fresh fruit and vegetables each subject is in fact a portrait.

With the flattened picture space looking down, it brings the subject right to the forefront of the viewing experience. Fantastic nudes by the artist not only show the wonderful lines and curves of the figure, but also the fun that can be had when mixing patterns of the floor, bedding, and wall.

On line and land based galleries: Mokum Gallery in Amsterdam, Netherlands.

The artist has two books out you can find on his website. One retails for $20 and $15.

For some art homework  try painting a still life from above and take advantage of the top view by making a great design from wood grain in the table and try lengthening a glass or cup and see what you come up with! Have fun creating!