Portraits

Selected Works

Girl with Orange Hair
60″ X 48″ Acrylic on Canvas

My portraits seem as if they are phasing in and out of existence.  I wait until a personality shows and the painting vibrates with its own life. 

There are always surprises in my work.  I respond to them as best I can.

Girl in Pink Field
28″ X 22″ Acrylic on Canvas

Girl in Turquoise Dress
28″ X 22″ Acrylic on Canvas

Most of my work never makes it to the finish line.  Sometimes I have 4 or 5 faces in the same painting. 

Face With Red
24″ X 30″ Acrylic on Canvas

Man in Gray Field
60″ X 48″ Acrylic on Canvas

Girl with Red Hair
36″ X 30″ Acrylic on Canvas

Man in Black Field
48″ X 48″ Acrylic on Canvas

Head with Orange
60″ X 48″ Acrylic on Canvas

Face in Blue Field
40″ X 40″ Acrylic on Canvas

Portraits by James Koskinas

Faces are one of my primary subjects, part of my quest to know the human condition.  I attempt to paint as automatically as possible, intending to bring forth elements of my unconscious.  I add layers of paint until the original painting has been covered over many times, working rapidly.  Influenced by Native American mythology, I see the role of artist as akin to shaman, trusting my instincts and freeing the portrait from the customary restraints that painting imposes. 

I like building faces and then watching them go wild.  I like to bring them back and reassemble them in some order.  I like to collect the scattered pieces and fragments of a nose here, an eye, a mouth and the reassembly is not always realistic.  On the contrary, the usual order I start out with changes continually, finally revealing a personality or essence I am looking for.  Then I know the painting is done. 

-James Koskinas

Julie Schumer Dialogue With Black