Artist: Mark Beard
Figurative Drawing 5, 2018
Size 38 x 57cm
Charcoal on paper
Mark Beard has charmed audiences for more than two decades with portraits and murals as Bruce Sargeant, a name that merges the painting styles of John Singer Sargeant with the erotic photographs of fashion photographer of Bruce Weber. He is best known for his work that depicts strapping, young athletic figures in various landscapes and locker rooms. As Mark Beard, he continues to hone his skills and dutifully sketches from live models once a week in his Manhattan studio. The result of this dedicated practice is a dynamic selection of works on paper sketched with graphite pencil and conte crayon on Arches paper. Each drawing is unique and original.
About the artist: Mark Beard is perhaps the most literal example of an artist pulled in so many different directions that he chose to “invent” six different personae in which to channel his overflowing energy and need for expression. Each painting style is radically different from the next, so it remains entirely believable that the work could stem from six completely different people of different time periods and different schools of thought. With a background in set design, Beard has always been one who could conjure total magic with anything available. For this exhibit, he returns as the beloved 20th century painter from England, Bruce Sargeant, featuring a parade of Arcadian scenes suggesting afternoons of young men sporting in the countryside, rowing, bicycling, hunting or wrestling. Clean shaven, well manicured youths pose casually, indulging every opportunity to display a titillating flex of stone-like musculature. Like modern Greek statues, Beard paints these prestigious figures oftentimes in pairs of twos and threes in a lazy state of beautiful passivity. Mark Beard keeps himself fresh with challenge, undertaking ambitious commissions and committing to weekly sketch sessions with live models in his Manhattan studio. The result of this dedicated practice is a stunning array of graphite and conte crayon drawings on Arches paper. Mark Beard has exhibited with Carrie Haddad Gallery for nearly twenty years and there has never been a dull moment. Mark Beard, born in 1956 in Salt Lake city, now lives in New York City. His works are in museum collections worldwide, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City; the Museum of Modern Art, New York City; the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York City; the Boston Museum of Fine Arts; and the Harvard, Yale, and Princeton University Art Museums; among many others. We would not be the least bit surprised to see new ‘personas’ emerge in the coming years.