Art has been part of my life as long as I can remember. I was born in Boston, Massachusetts, and have lived almost all my life in New England, now settled in Rhode Island, with times living in Manhattan, NY, Carmel, CA, Santa Fe, NM and London, England, mixed in.
I enjoyed drawing comic books when I was young. My paternal grandmother was a skilled watercolorist, and my father, grandfather, and great- grandfather were all sailboat designers. On my mother's side, my grandfather was a jewelry designer. So art is in the blood!
I went to the University of Massachusetts, and have an MFA, but really learned about being an artist during study at the Exeter College of Art in England, and how to paint at the Art Students League in New York.
I admire many artists, but am influenced in my own painting primarily by the works of Wyeth, Sargent, Hopper, Homer, Sorolla, Monet and Degas.
My career began taking commissions as a portrait painter, and I still continue to do so, specializing in informal portraits of families and children, something few artists do. I find this challenging, but very rewarding, that is, to capture an image of a family and place that reflects their time together.
After art school, I returned to take a studio in England, continuing my study and practice of portraiture, and also learned to paint landscapes in France, Italy, and England with the help of an artist friend based in England.
Based on this landscape series I secured my first major exhibit, walking into a prestigious London gallery with my (then) slides, and, to my astonishment, being offered an exhibit on the spot!
After that I returned to the states, and started exhibiting extensively in Nantucket, Martha's Vineyard, Boston, and eventually Naples, FL and Carmel, CA, where I had my own gallery for a time.
I have also had my own one-man gallery on and off in Rhode Island, often seasonally, as I enjoy meeting the people who purchase and live with my work.
In my work I seek to share the beauty and meaning of the life and world I see around me. The main way I have expressed this over the years is through classical painting. It is my wish that my paintings express the power of love, the profound meaning of beauty, and the deeper nature that lies within all of us.
While the core of my work has remained "traditional," I experiment with subjects and styles beyond my classical work frequently, and have created a series of yoga paintings, sports art and more, all in expressionist styles.
One thing about being a "modern" painter, in an age of diversity and information, is that where once artists were tied to a certain genre, there is a great deal of opportunity to explore, and I feel that is a great addition creatively.
I maintain a studio in Wakefield, RI, and much of my work is centered around the New England shore.
Over several decades I have exhibited in many of the finest galleries in the US and UK, including:
"The light in these pieces on display is disconcertingly beautiful, and so real that the folds of stark white drapery that encircle his women seem to have been caught on fast film, just as the bright illumination was about to fade...creating an image that burns into our awarenss of eternal time...Schock's accomplishment in this exhibition is formidable."
For me, art is about seeing the world in different ways. Perception is a choice about what we want to see, and the artist freezes a particular perception to draw attention to it, to express its validity in his or her vision of the world.
Art has the potential to direct our varying perceptions, with their constantly changing appearances, to a more constant, truthful vision of reality. Humanity could be said to be in a collective dream--expression in the various mediums of the arts ideally creates a "dream within a dream" that leads to awakening. Great art reminds us that we are spiritual beings first, not only material ones.
Personally, I utilize the figure in my paintings as a symbol of interaction and perception as well as a complete entity in itself; one system, the body, interacting with another, nature. Human perception is that these are different, separate systems at times, not at others. This dichotomy, and the search for harmonious relationships resulting from its creative resolution, are the major focus of my figurative work.
In my landscape work I choose to focus on and celebrate the successful relationship of man and nature, through a landscape woven through time with human interaction, such as a beautiful garden or farm, or the simple, timeless enjoyment of a child at play on the beach." - David Schock