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Ravens by Andrew Denman <Back to Thumbnails "The Usual Suspects"
48 x 48"
Acrylic on Cradled Board

How to Buy, General Information

Ravens have long been a favorite subject of mine. Despite being quite common, they are loaded with personality, which always makes them an interesting subject to paint. I often find that attitude, before any other particular detail of color or form, dictates what I paint, and ravens are simply overflowing with attitude, which is evident in the title of the piece.

“The Usual Suspects” evolved out of my “Pattern” series, in which animal subjects are pitted against a stamp-like, mass produced image. In this piece, however, rather than being presented in front of a patterned background, the ravens are melded into the background pattern itself, a breakthrough shift in style I first achieved with a similar composition focusing on hedgehogs. The Pattern series explored the notion of commodification of wildlife, reproductive capacity, and the ubiquity of urban wildlife. It is in this last sense that “The Usual Suspects” relates. The removal of the animal subject from its natural habitat and its recontextualizing in a stark, white space, underscores the ability of the raven to adapt to foreign and man-made environments. The serial nature of the raven “stamp” and the use of non-objective color further serve to pull the animal out of context. Even within this sea of colors, the two representationally “realistic” birds almost become lost. The entry of one such raven from the right side of the painting and the exit of the other half of its body to left lends the image a suggestion of constant, repetitive motion like an old-fashioned zoetrope.

Welcome to the online home for artwork by Andrew Denman, an Arizona–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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