Steven Steinberg

Oil Painting

MAP # 15

Open During Tour Only


Contact Information:
Steven Steinberg
255 Screech Owl
The Sea Ranch, CA 95497

Phone: 707-785-3627 / 415-730-9280

Mailing Address:
PO Box 1357, Gualala, CA 95445

I paint in a style called Grisaille, a term for painting executed entirely in monochrome or near-monochrome, usually in shades of grey. I employ grisaille as under-painting or “sketch” for an oil painting (in preparation for glazing layers of color over it). It gives my figurative oil paintings a depth unachievable, in my opinion, from other techniques. Renaissance artists such as Mantegna and Polidoro da Caravaggio often used grisaille as a “classicizing” effect, either in imitation of the effect of a classical sculptured relief, or Roman painting.

My figurative paintings are inspired by photographs I take while traveling the many areas of the country in which I’ve lived and painted. I do not use projection techniques to transfer photos on to the canvas but rely on old fashioned charcoal sketches as the basis of the future images. I hope to capture feelings that are evoked from these photographs, rather than try and achieve photo-realism: the feelings surrounding my work are unique to the viewer and not imposed by me.

My body of work is comprised of a figurative series, abstract series, landscape series and dancer series. In my figurative work, I hope to capture “frozen moments” in time, often finding private moments between friends (Beach Scenes) and in family settings (Sea Ranch Beach Scenes and mother and daughter paintings).

My abstract paintings typically take a clue from a realistic image, often photographs I take, that inspire a minimalist approach to depicting the major impetus for the composition. My latest abstract series seeks to convey the interaction between nature and the manmade environment, conveying the conflict between the two forces.

My landscape series is based on my travels in California: my dancer series seeks to capture movement and interaction between dances while in movement.

I don’t try to convey my interpretations of my paintings to the viewer: instead, I allow each viewer to be inspired in reliving a moment in their lives that is inspired by the painting.