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Jason de Graaf: New Paintings

Jacana Gallery
Vancouver BC – Sept 6–28, 2008

Jason de Graaf, Strawberries on Foil

Jason de Graaf, Strawberries on Foil (2008), acrylic on canvas [JACANA Gallery, Vancouver BC, Sep 6-28]

Jason de Graaf, Solstice

It is always gratifying to see a new painter with exemplary technique having a first solo show. Jason de Graaf was born in Montreal and currently resides in Oka, Quebec. From 1993-1996 he studied illustration at Dawson College in Montreal. After years of full-time and part-time illustration work, he has devoted himself entirely to painting since 2005. He is represented by Plus One Gallery in London, UK and by the Jacana Gallery in Vancouver.

De Graaf’s hyper-realist photographic style would appear computer-generated if it weren’t for the depth and nuance of his colouration. Images like Apple Blossoms and Orchid II invite lingering looks at the variations of hue in the petals. His flowers, glass balls and reflective marbles are almost swooning with rich sensory details.

As he puts it, “Many of my paintings are about the relationship of light with reflective and transparent surfaces and my journey to understand those qualities and convey my sense of wonder and intrigue over them”. His work is a good example of Magic Realism, where looming foreground objects contrast with a sense of distance, and where dissimilar objects and textures are juxtaposed – lush, ripe strawberries with slick tinfoil, or hard, shiny wine glasses with a soft-focus sunset.


Mia Johnson

 Fri, Sep 5, 2008