Oil painting by Leonard Mizerek
Leonard Mizerek nurtured his artistic love of nature while growing up in Pennsylvania’s Brandywine Valley, made famous by the Wyeth family of artists. “I was exposed to works by the whole Wyeth family,” he says. “The one who greatly influenced me was N.C. Wyeth, the father of Andrew. He had a great ability to tell a story, and his strong use of light and dramatic color [made an impression].”
Mizerek, who lives in Annapolis, Maryland, is known for colorful, luminous seascapes — painted on-site — and expressive brushwork. “I prefer marine subjects because I enjoy the way water reflects the floating objects, as well as the sky and time of day,” he says. “It mirrors shapes and intensifies light.”
Annapolis Harbor, City Dock depicts one of the few remaining Chesapeake Bay skipjacks. It’s a good example of Mizerek’s work. “The warm morning light on the brick-colored buildings, contrasted by the color of the water, is what attracted me to this scene,” the artist says. “Annapolis is one of America’s historic treasures. I consider the City Dock to be the absolute center of this great city.”
The play of light — whether on the water, the marsh, the land — is a central theme of Mizerek’s paintings. “I work outdoors to capture the light firsthand and bring out all its color and luminosity,” says Mizerek, who painted live on the French public television channel France 3 during a major antique boat festival. “Light alters the color of all objects and touches those nearby. It sets a mood and evokes emotion, which I strive to portray in my work.”
Mizerek is a fellow with the American Society of Marine Artists and has won the prestigious Salzman Award for Excellence in Painting from the National Arts Club in New York. He also has exhibited with other nationally recognized marine artists at the Newport Art Museum, the Maine Maritime Museum and the Connecticut River Museum.
To view this and other works by Leonard Mizerek, visit the J. Russell Jinishian Gallery website at www.jrusselljinishiangallery.com or visit the gallery at 1899 Bronson Road in Fairfield, Connecticut.
March 2015 issue