Magazine article Southwest Art

William Berra: Nedra Matteucci Galleries, June 24-July 22

Magazine article Southwest Art

William Berra: Nedra Matteucci Galleries, June 24-July 22

Article excerpt

THIS MONTH Nedra Matteucci Galleries unveils 30 new oil paintings by Santa Fe artist William Berra. "This newest show of paintings by Bill Berra is the most dynamic I have seen since I started representing his work nearly 30 years ago," says gallery owner Nedra Matteucci. "His paintings have new depth, from surprising figurative work to landscapes that contrast both the familiar and uncommon. His current, varied technique and style in oil, with some on gold-colored metal leaf, create exciting paintings of people, birds, cattle, and colorful vistas near and far." Entitled Inspired by Nature, the show opens on Saturday, June 24, with an artist's reception from 1 to 3 p.m.

Collectors familiar with Berra's work will recognize his signature style of intensively researched motifs that go straight to the essence of a particular entity or landscape. In a process he's employed for decades, Berra investigates a particular motif until he knows it so well he can paint it from memory, then explores it in a variety of paintings. Visitors to this show can expect to find some familiar motifs-cattle, landscapes (both domestic and European), and cloudscapes-as well as several brand-new ones.

"Last summer we had this Jack-andthe- beanstalk sunf lower," Berra explains. Passing by it on walks throughout the summer, one day Berra was attracted to a finch perched upside down on the flower. "I've gotten into sumi-e painting, very quick, painted usually from memory," he says. "That finch and sunf lower evolved into a sumi-e brush motif. …

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