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Black-Necked Stilts by Andrew Denman
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"Pick Up Sticks"
15 ½ x 31 ¼" Acrylic on Board
Black-Necked Stilts


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Stilts are one of my favorite local wading birds. Like flamingos (another favorite of mine), they are a wonderful combination of the lyrical and the linear. With the elegant "s" curves of their necks and the hard angles of their legs and bills, I’m never sure whether they are graceful or gawky. Either way, they are fascinating to paint. In this piece, my main goal was to explore the explosive tension of converging and competing angles and lines. The contrast between linear and curvilinear form is echoed in the background and border with shapes suggestive, but not descriptive, of the stilts’ marshy home. Not only was I completely disinterested in painting "realistic" grasses, but the bold black, white, and red color pattern of the birds themselves felt very "mod" to me. That suggestion sent the grasses spinning off into a "Jackson Pollock meets shag carpeting" motif and inspired the luscious 1970’s flavored color palette.

Welcome to the online home for artwork by Andrew Denman, a California –based, internationally recognized, award-winning contemporary wildlife artist. Denman primarily paints wildlife and animal subjects in a unique, hallmark style combining hyper-realism with stylization and abstraction. His dynamic and original acrylic paintings can be found in museum collections on two continents and in numerous private collections in the USA and abroad. His clear voice, unique vision, and commitment to constant artistic experimentation have positioned him on the forefront of an artistic vanguard of the best contemporary wildlife and animal painters working today.
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