This was painted alla prima, a technique in which layers of wet paint are applied to previous layers of wet paint all in one sitting. I wanted to have the light lead through the piece like a river. The somber look on the model's face is contrasted by the sensuousness of her pose and the striking reds and magentas on the sofa. This piece is on a gallery wrapped canvas and the painting continues around the sides. The work comes ready to hang.

- John Kelly

Stephanie Seated

Oil painting on stretched canvas

Signed on front

30" h x 20" w x .75" d
2 lbs. 0 oz.



John Kelly
Boulogne, France

Getting to Know John

John was born in Paris and grew up in New York. He attended the School of Visual Arts in the 1980s and participated in the East Village art scene at the time, showing at 301 Houston Street Gallery and Ground Zero Gallery. His work was mainly influenced by the Abstract Expressionists and the German Expressionists, but that changed when he saw a Balthus retrospective at the Met in 1983. His work became figurative, and has remained so ever since. Today, he works with several models, and they’ve become active collaborators in his art. “Allowing them to be creative helps me,” he says. John’s paintings live between the realms of classicism and modernity. He painstakingly renders his models with the precision traditionally reserved for the world’s wealthy and powerful, but his subjects are like you and me. As viewers, we see intimate moments of self-reflection and vulnerability. The figures are so close to the surface, it feels like you are part of the incredibly charged scene.