Lew Gordon's Biography Continued:
...my work is not impressionist. Rather, I have added a contemporary style that I developed over a lifetime of discovery and change. Visual narrative and colors that fit the contemporary style of our homes and offices," says Gordon.
In developing his unique style, Gordon says: "The artists I have most admired are Manet, Degas and Monet. Those painters struggled to find a new look. I am a continuation of that school of painting. I recently sent a number of large canvases to a one man show in Dallas, Texas. Although the theme was water lilies, they were quite different from Monet's water lilies in both style and color".
Gordon says his style first took root around the time he was living in New Orleans in the early 1960s. Having finished his college work and after living in Europe for four years as a member of the U.S. Air Force, Gordon found life in the French Quarter an easy transition, not too dissimilar from studies at the Academy of Fine Art in Munich, Germany where he was allowed to sit in on life drawing and painting classes. It also allowed him to study privately under a nationally known teacher, Ms Violet Moulin. He now believes these classes in portraiture put him on the track to his current style of painting.
After five years of serious work in the portrait field, and feeling limited by the nature of the work, he began to produce large works for the elegant restaurants of the city. These paintings of the romantic south featuring plantations and southern belles, led to his first sales of Romantic Realism paintings, a dramatic change from the traditional style he was exposed to at the art academy in Germany.
Gordon's life took several twists and turns over the next several years. Life in New Orleans was becoming more stressful and the French Quarter was changing. Looking for a quiet retreat he discovered the high bluffs on the east side of Mobile Bay. After purchasing a large old home overlooking the bay he eventually found the art world didn't extend to the crab traps and pier houses. Life was better, art sales were slower, still a choice was made to stay as a partner in a local advertising agency. The upside was financial rewards and a great lifestyle for his family. At the end of five years and with the children grown and married, Gordon returned to New Orleans for a short time and then moved on to New Mexico and fresh challenges to paint Romantic Realism, western style. It wasn't until the 1980s, when he moved to Dallas, that his career as an international artist took off. Gordon says: "I found immediately that the top people in the art business traveled through Dallas from Paris, London, and New York to Los Angeles and they were picking up my work. I started to get national recognition and collectors began to attend my gallery shows. In 1987, I was discovered by a major art publishing firm that reproduced my original paintings, which in turn led to hundreds of galleries offering limited edition prints and canvas transfers of the paintings to collectors".
Today Gordon and his wife, Jill live on a wooded hillside in the Farms of West Mead at the edge of Nashville, Tennessee. "Its very scenic", says Gordon. "We have wonderful thickets full of birds and large deer that roam the ridges and stroll through the yard from time to time".
Gordon says "I like to do paintings that are serene while also adding details so the viewer can continually discover new things in a painting". Gordon's paintings have a picturesque quality and subject matter...often scenes of the French Riviera or lakes of northern Italy, city streets of Paris, New Orleans, New York and San Francisco as well as his traditional works of gardens and flowering vistas. The artist says "If I had to pick one area to paint, it would be northern Italy. The Italians are friendly, although driving can he hazardous to your health. Even though l enjoy traveling around the world, my basic interest in life is painting. I'm truly contented when I get back home to my studio".