I have been surrounded by Andrew Stevovich’s work my entire life. In the house I grew up in, my parents hung Sargent and Cassatt in the living room, and Stevovich in the kitchen, where our family spent most of their time. I have fond memories of relating to these quiet pictures while I was eating. I imagined that the Woman with a Fishbowl depicted a narrative of my pet, Goldie, and the menacing previous owner who seemed ready to torment my poor goldfish with her net. As a child, I saw simplicity in Andrew’s oils. I understood them to be more familiar than the cartoons I watched on Saturday mornings; yet, like the cartoons, the imagery represented daily life in a colorful and entertaining manner. Now, as an adult, I see the complexity of his soft, linen canvases. I see the intricacy of composition and technique, as well as the density of his subject matter.
The underlying complexities of Stevovich’s process contrasts with the flatness of his characters. What at first seems simple about these paintings becomes elaborate when investigated thoroughly. Compositionally, the people and objects are very carefully designed. Often using the Fibonacci ratio (a mathematical formula derived from biological forms), the artist arranges curved and straight lines in a way that simultaneously balances the canvas and expands the image beyond the frame. Stylistically, his figures seem casually drawn — given their ethereal appearance; however, the artist painstakingly applies each line with deliberate precision. By shifting the angle of the parabola that separates the lips of a mouth or curve of an eye, Stevovich achieves a range of emotion with a very minimal approach.
Celebrating a nearly 35-year relationship with the artist, the exhibition includes paintings and drawings from the last few years, which exemplifies Stevovich’s distinctive style and exposes his willingness to take new risks in scale, perspective, and subject. We hope you enjoy the show!
Adelson Galleries Boston