While some artists are inspired by nature, others like Vincent Giarrano prefer the urban landscape. Her realistic paintings of dirty doorways, colorful corner shops and small crowded apartments are inhabited by young female figures going about their usual routines. The seemingly effortless compositions of these corners of modern society make each canvas a snapshot of city life.
Giarrano first worked as a professional illustrator who drew and inked for comic book companies. During this time he lived in New York and developed a love for the metropolis. This fascination eventually became the foundation of his self-taught painting practice. “[My art] is mostly about the feeling of real-life experiences and what is beautiful or interesting in contemporary life,” Giarrano tells My Modern Met. “There is a special feeling one gets when living in the city, and I wanted to reflect that with my painting.”
With extremely detailed depictions of intersections, sidewalks and stately buildings, Giarrano’s art immerses viewers in the carefully rendered cityscape. In particular, his paintings capture what it is like to be alone in an urban environment, as his works tend to focus on lonely individuals at home or outdoors. “I feel a strong connection to the roots of painting as a narrative art form,” he continues. “I identify specifically with periods of art history that focus on the painting of contemporary life; Realism in the 19th century, Impressionism, Post-Impressionism, the Ashcan school. I like that Robert Henri speaks of the artist as a journalist.
Artist Vincent Giarrano creates realistic paintings inspired by cities like New York.
His canvases of urban landscapes are inhabited by people going about their daily business.
“There is a special feeling one gets when living in the city, and I wanted to reflect that with my painting.”
My Modern Met has granted permission to feature photos by Vincent Giarrano.
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