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The Artist

Michael Kagan

1980, United States

Painter & Media Artist

Michael Kagan’s oil-based paintings are eclectic – heavy brush strokes in sharp primary colours do not let the viewer get away easily.

The way Kagan paints attracts attention. His game is not so much one of perspective as it is of immersion. Like through a whirling wind of colours one is hauled into the canvas, nearly hypnotically. To stand further back from the image is an attempt to understand it, while the following step towards it only testifies to an unexplainable magic.

Untitled, 2013

The city of New York has shaped and inspired countless artists. Kagan too feels the pleasant grip of the metropole in his studio practice.

It is rare for elements that are so different from each other to melt together so elegantly. The subject matter is historic, technological and scientific, images of man pushing the limit of his abilities. If Kagan approves? Maybe. But the colours have a slightly coldish blue tint and are applied rather boldly, with a strong hand and dedication.

With his impasto technique he layers thick but often short blobs of oil paint next to each other, sometimes on top of each other. After vaguely outlining shapes from NASA photographs, his process becomes more abstract. Geometrical shapes become different colour fields that are never completely separate from each other. Michael Kagan’s paintings unfold their power by turning something that has primarily had its place in realistic photographs into an emotionally responsive image.

A sharp fascination for the real world, hues of white and blue, and masking tape are Micheal Kagan’s most important tools.

Kagan photo credits: Wesley Verhoeve

Works for sale of Michael Kagan

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Edition of 70

Higher Places, 2017

71 x 101 cm

Michael Kagan

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