Our Pick of the Week is the opening reception of “L’Homme” featuring the paintings of Stephanie Trachtenberg. The reception takes place at Upper West Restaurant this Sunday, from 4:00 pm to 7:00 pm.

See this week’s Argonaut Newspaper for myPOW-Sun-July20-UpperWest-Blue-StephanieTrachtenberg article about the event. Upper West is an upscale restaurant who truly supports local artists. Come for the opening and stay for dinner. The food is amazing.

See image: “Blue” 30″x40″ oil on canvas

I had the chance to speak with the artist. Trachtenberg told me she was looking forward to showing her work at Upper West and describes how it all happened. “I was having some prints made and a very lovely Greek lady named Debbie Pauketet was helping me. She asked if she could see more of my art. I invited her to my studio and she really enjoyed seeing my work. She said she had a friend and collaborator, Gino Paino, who might be interested also.” Gino Paino of Beach Vault curated the solo exhibition and was drawn to her work immediately citing her as a contemporary master.

Trachtenberg has created art most of her life. “Through the years I have worked very hard to develop a mastery of my materials and craft,” says Trachtenberg. “And now I feel I am able to delve deeper into the soul of reality.” She explained that as her life has evolved, she now allows herself to show more profound emotion.

I am often intrigued by what inspires artists to create. As we all know, our everyday lives can sometimes get in the way. I asked the painter how her emotions and daily circumstances affect her art. “Some emotions spark full color canvases, others are more muted and some are dark. Some are more abstract and some are more detailed. The colors of my emotions influence the colors of my canvases,” revealed Trachtenberg.

July20-StephenieTrachtenberg-SelfportraitSee image: Self-portrait “Soul Painter” 20″x24″ oil on canvas

Trachtenberg shared a bit of her process…”The first technique I use is to cover the canvas with one color, usually an earth tone or a red, which is known as a ground. Then I block in the image with a light charcoal trying to create a balanced composition. Then I paint the space around the image to find how it exists in space. But I believe the most crucial aspect of painting is the use of light. Light reflects life. Light is in motion and creates motion to give the painting vibrancy. As a painter, I am a ‘light traveller’!” laughs the artist.
If you are interested in meeting the artist, be sure to stop by Upper West this Sunday. Light appetizers and wine will be served

For more info about the artist visit her website at http://www.passionaterealist.com/

On view through mid November

What: Opening Reception
Where: Upper West, 3321 Pico Blvd., Santa Monica,
When: 4:00 pm – 7:00 pm
Phone: (310)586-1111
Website: http://www.theupperwest.com/