Sharon Sprung
Oil painting portrait of a young woman

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Collection of the artist, courtesy Gallery Henoch

“A” was a waitress and bartender at a local bistro I frequent. I responded to her spontaneity and animation, always moving—quick and unexpected. Proximity and repetition allowed me the opportunity to observe her before asking her to pose. She was a curious and willing model—uncharacteristically quiet when she viewed the results on my easel soon after the completion of the painting. We lost touch—she, off to something else—an aggressive explorer who has lived all over the world. I thought the strongly colored, striped sweater reflected her enthusiastic, impatient and changeable character, infusing the painting with a contemporary image of a young, spirited female, ruled by will and the intent to experience life on her terms. The composition and surface combine my interest in a contemporary pictorialism with my respect for the skills of the past masters. I always attempt to meld this sensibility of the immediate present with the truth of nature, carefully and patiently observed. “A” and I continue to seek, she more restlessly than I.