Category: In The Artist's Studio

Charles Dwyer

Mixing a strong abstract and design foundation with minutely and sensitively observed figure studies, Dwyer is able to create stylistically unique pieces. Typically, to arrive at his finished works, Dwyer positions his model within a complete tableau, which includes costume design; make up, backdrops, and props. He then captures the image using a camera with a 6” x 7” or 4” x 5” frame. This is the starting point for an individual and idiosyncratic exploration of the image in which color, pattern, and art historical and pop culture references are combined with Dwyer’s exquisite drawing skills.

Dwyer uses these techniques and references in a process that is natural and spontaneous. He will begin several compositions at once by creating color planes in a variety of media such as graphite, ink, paint and pastel. Dwyer incorporates text and design, and will collage in clippings from his favorite vintage fashion magazines. It is at this point that each artwork takes on its individual identity, when the ethereal, elegant, and sometimes provocative female figures emerge from the abstracted background. The end result of his work contains a beautiful balance of intricacy and simplicity. While the background is filled with what seems to be infinite intuitive gestures, the female form unifies the otherwise chaotic composition.

It is Dwyer’s raw, artistic ability, compositional intuition and instinctive risk taking that makes his work stand out in the contemporary art realm. He continues to experiment and push the borders of art making, most recently reinterpreting the techniques of printmaking and photography. Dwyer is an avant-garde artist in every sense of the term, and for this reason, his artwork is widely sought out by galleries and collectors. The unexpected imagery found in Dwyer’s elegant, almost classical female forms provoke endless interpretation and exploration.

In the end, Dwyer’s women are beautiful, enigmatic, colorful, reflective, inviting, dazzling, but always just beyond reach.