While I paint many different kinds of subjects, the landscape is my first and greatest love. Like many artists, I strive to achieve a painterly realism in my work. I do this for a few reasons. As students we are taught to focus on what is essential in our subject; but this can be a subjective judgment. For me, what is essential about nature is its complexity.
Everywhere I look I see the grittiness, cragginess and layered, fine-grained texture of the natural world. It is this essential complexity I try to capture in paint. Experience has taught me that the best way to do this is to let the paint do what it does best: look like paint. Drips, splatters, wipes, palette knife, various brushes, and plenty of other abstract paint applications are crucial.
Exactly how painterly to make it is a question for each painting, and is dictated by the subject at hand and what about it I most wish to capture. And since I start most of my paintings outdoors, it’s worth noting that weather, that simple and unalterable force of nature, shapes a great part of what I do and how I do it.
Time is limited and a complete and literal rendering of every element is neither possible nor desirable. So while the idea is to simplify, I am careful not to make it simple, for nature is never simple.
Among the top honors Mark has received are the Grand Prize for Landscape and a spot on the cover of International Artist magazine, as well as more recently the Joseph Hartley Memorial award at the prestigious Salmagundi Club in New York City, Best in Show at the American Impressionist Society's National Exhibition and Best in Show at the Scottsdale Salon of Fine Art.