Gregory Deanes paintings now grace numerous private and corporate collections. Deanes clients include sports figures, politicians, movie stars, lawyers, surgeons, authors, and designers---even royalty. Corporate clients include medical, real estate, and software establishments, as well as restaurants, retail stores, banks, and hotels---ranging from Nordstrom to Hewlett-Packard. He held is first solo abstract show in 1977 in Honolulu, and has since had many showings of his critically acclaimed expressionist work, most recently a one-man exhibition at the Accademia delle Arti del Designo in Florence, Italy. Deane is the first American artist to be honored with a show at the Accademia, which was founded by Michelangelo.
Gregory Deane is a visual virtuoso whose every brush stroke breathes passion. "I strive for energy and generosity," the artist says. He applies paint generously, uses colors vividly, and his lines give a sense of movement that overflows with poetic emotion. Deanes work has always been passionate. "I cannot remember a time in my life when I haven't been drawing or playing with molding clay, painting, or crating."
Gregory Deane is a quintessential West Coast artist. He was born in Oregon and moved to California as a teenager. Even as a child he was fascinated with color arrangements and textures, and excelled at art from an early age, beginning with portraits and character studies. Design school later attracted him to San Francisco, and he began his working life in the design field. But all the while he painted, selling his paintings to clients who would buy them.
Shortly after he married his wife Margo, Deanes design work began to take back seat to his art, and 26 years ago he decided to devote full attention to painting. Deane specializes in abstract and nonobjective painting, where a brush stroke here or a rubbed or dabbed paint streak there might suggest different things to different viewers. With allusion and visual suggestion comes artistic meaning. "The emotion in my work often comes from somewhere deep down, and can speak to the inner part of each person," Deane believes. "I have certain things in mind when I create each piece, perhaps the emotion of joy or tranquillity when I choose my colors, or perhaps the influence of the Orient or an obscure European tradition when I layer in bits of paper or gold leaf. This is new art, but tradition is frequently there too."
In the spirit of abstraction, though, the viewer is free to interpret each piece as he or she wishes. "Ive found," Deane says, "that a good painting is one you can internalize, one in which a given element or the work as a whole means something special to you---perhaps in ways you might not admit to another person." This is how the artists passion reaches the viewer, through personal interpretation.
Gregory Deanes Expressionism has recently taken a turn toward mixed media. "By including a photograph or words from a newspaper, bits of tissue paper or whatever might be at hand," the artist reports, "I can evoke a grounded feeling of place, whether its an African jungle or a Chinese market." Deanes new inspiration arises from recent travels to China, Japan, Hong Kong, and Thailand.
"My art, at its best." The artist explains, "is a continuous process of discovery;sometimes headlong, sometimes introspective, but always on the move." Viewers can witness the dynamic passion in Deanes every brushstroke. He attacks his canvases with broad strokes of color, yet his finished works reveal subtleties and complexities that draw in the viewer.Deanes work is exuberant as well as dynamic. "Some artists have an overly political message, and I might offer such a message or two now and then," the artist says. "But mostly my art is joyful. If you look at art every day, why not look at something that gives you delight or a feeling of exultation?" But his work is not always joyful, he notes. Sometimes he adds an element of contrast, of juxtaposition, something that gives tension to the works fundamental joy. In his art Deane combines his exuberance with quite subtleties, including layers of hidden color, dark and mysterious objects, and surprising shadows and textures. "A paintings open spaces are just as important as the areas of thickest paint," Deane says, "because they create energy that make the paintings thrive as a whole."