Born in Austin, Texas in 1948, Paul Manes is a contemporary painter of both domestic and international renown. Recognized for his dramatic and expressionistic paint handling and dark earthy tones reminiscent of Rembrandt, Manes currently lives and works in New York, NY. His sophisticated technique allows Manes to be as abstract or realistic as he deems appropriate and his subject matter varies from swampy landscapes, inspired by living in Beaumont, TX, to WWII airplanes, and still-lives of tumbling bowls. Alberto Burri is one of Manes’s many inspirations due to his use of unorthodox materials to create textured and charred images and, as such, Manes mixes much of his own paint using clay, ink, chalk, and other pigments with an acrylic binder.
Borrowing from his background in photography, Manes is always aware of the framing edges of his canvases and actively embraces photography’s flattened surface. However, instead of adopting the selective quality of photography, Manes employs the ornate complexity of classical painting. This combination of flattened space with Manes’s dense painterly quality generates a tense vibration on the surface of his works.
Manes has had an active exhibition schedule since studying at the Graduate School of Fine Arts, Hunter College (New York) in 1984. Domestically he has shown cross-country including in Los Angeles, New York, Palm Beach, Atlanta, New Orleans, Beaumont, Austin, Dallas, and Houston. Internationally, Manes has exhibited in Milan, Monte Carlo, Rome, Paris, Bologna, and Munich, among others. Manes’s work is frequently collected in both the public and private sectors and can be found in the collections of: the Guggenheim Museum in New York, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, the Museum of Fine Arts Houston, the Art Museum of Southeast Texas in Beaumont, Yoko Ono, and Emeril Lagasse.