704 N. Wells St., CHICAGO, IL 60654 USA, Tel: 312.664.3406 email



Opening reception: FRIDAY, November 6, 2015, 5-8pm

Michael Dubina, "Matchbook Vista"

Michael Dubina has been an acclaimed painter of the midwestern landscape for over 20 years. While known for his large scale panoramic works, his newest landscape paintings are rendered in minute, evocative and visionary detail. These jewel-like works embody at once a sense of magic realism and an expansive, romantic expressionism. The images are painted with traditional oil techniques on the inside of matchbook covers, and are floated in over-sized black frames which compliment the physicality of the painted object. In Dubina’s work one can sense such influences as the atmospheric qualities of 19th century Tonalism, the tranquility of Luminism, and the romantic spiritualism of the Hudson River School. But instead of looking back nostalgically, Dubina brings these qualities into our time, placing his striking attempts to conjure the Sublime on the inside of common everyday restaurant matchbook covers.

Michael Dubina, oil on matchbook cover - (3 side by side)

Also opening FRIDAY, November 6, 5-8pm:

Joseph Hronek, "Realist Apologia".

Chicago artist Joseph Hronek creates small-scale, hyper-real paintings that comment on ideas about perception, reality and artifice. Hronek's figurative and "minimalist still-life" paintings draw the viewer close through their intimate associations and extreme level of detail, encouraging a visual re-examination of the quiet and commonplace. Hronek is known for his fastidious attention to detail, which begins before the painting is actually started. A series of compositional studies on graph paper comprise the first step of a painting’s development, followed by further color and value studies on paper. Once the composition has been fully considered, and color relationships have been worked out, Hronek begins the final process of making the painting. This is also accomplished in stages: an imprimatura layer, followed by subsequent passages of ala-prima painting, scumbling, and glazing. The surface of the paintings are lovingly and carefully crafted into being, and this committed approach breathes a sense of life into the objects and figures depicted in the works.

Joseph Hronek, Pear II, 2015, 12x24
oil on panel

Gallery Spotlight: Encaustic Painting at Addington Gallery

Excerpted from Chicago Art News

I asked Dan Addington if I could write about his gallery in my own words based on a number of conversations we’ve had. Addington features a number of artists who who explore a unique relationship between image and process oriented painting, including the medium of encaustic. It’s fun talking to Dan about encaustic art because he’s passionate about the medium and the way each artist uses it differently.

Let's step back and start with the basics of encaustic painting. Point one, it’s ancient, dating back to the 4th century BC.

And point two: painting with wax is very hard to do, it’s hard to control, and you have to work fast because wax goes from molten-lava-hot to dried candle wax in about 10 seconds. And like other mediums in which it’s difficult to master the basics, when a medium like this grows in popularity, a lot of the practitioners get lost in the technique, they become “Encaustic Painters” rather than artists who have to be working with Encaustic materials. And with this popularity, classes follow, which evolve into academic studies and before you know it…. there are a whole lot of rules.

Dan Addington is, himself, an encaustic painter – and he’s been doing it a long time, before it got trendy. In turn, he’s a fan of Howard Hersh, Mark Perlman and others who have been doing it even longer than him, before the schools and the hobbyists got their hands on it. Before the rules were written. So Addington’s aesthetic, and Encaustic posse could possibly be defined in that way: pre convention.

Addington builds his paintings up layer by layer, drawing on and gouging into the surface, adding oil paint, tar, fabric and other odd materials into the mix, which gives the work a very textural feel.

Now, Howard Hersh, who was featured in a recent exhibit and is represented by the gallery, is also pre-rules, yet he has a completely different approach, and balances the geometric with the inherent chaos of encaustic.

So how to tell the Encaustic painters from the artists who work with wax? Addington gravitates to work that has a conceptual level to it, artists who are going for a specific idea, and not just expressing their feelings through random splashes of color.

As Addington pointed out, “Encaustic has a visual archaeology that exists in each piece. Because you can see the translucent layers, it opens the door to the process. With much painting, the top surface is often the only surface the viewer can access. With encaustic, you can dig down through the layers and see the history…”




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    Representing contemporary American and International artists


    Addington Gallery is located in the historic River North Gallery District in Chicago.
    Open 11:00 - 6:00 Tuesday through Saturday, and by appointment
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    Addington Gallery features artists who work in a wide range of contemporary styles, subjects, and mediums. The gallery also offers a full range of services, including installation, painting restoration and conservation, framing consultation, and corporate curating.