Friday, June 7, 2013

DAM Architecture Modern Abstract Cityscapes by Erin Fickert-Rowland

The DAM Architecture Series ©2013 Erin Fickert-Rowland

I love downtown Denver, and of course, the Denver Art Museum (affectionately called "The DAM") is one of my very favorite places in the city.  Wonderfully unique architecture abounds!  Daniel Libeskind designed the DAM Hamilton Building, and Michael Graves was the architect for Denver's Central Library.  These three paintings are different views of those two buildings.

I wanted to stay true to the architecture, but I had to abstract the view to suit my artistic style.  I decided to use the artist's tool of the grid, and keep it visible throughout the painting process.  The compositions have been edited to remove pedestrians and vehicles in order to focus solely on the graphic lines of the architecture and bold compositional color.  You will also see paint that is both solid and drippy, and colors that are both vibrant and softened, to create a feeling of distance.

Here's a glimpse into the production of these three pieces:

Initial thumbnail sketches:

#Sketching new ideas for paintings- thinking about abstract cityscapes

Drawings transferred to canvas, and then after several layers of paint:

DAM Series in Production

"DAM Public Library" seen from the first layer of paint, and then in the final stages:

DAM Series in Production: Library

For such long, seated sessions, I sat on an exercise ball to avoid stiffness and get a little movement:

On my easel now- working on a new series of abstract Denver landscape paintings. My brother recently suggested I try using a balance ball instead of a chair for these long seated sessions- liking it so far! #painting

"DAM City View" seen in it's final stages. I wasn't happy with the harsh contrast of the building on the right, so I added another layer of neutral paint to tone the building down.  This kept the focus on moving the viewer's eye down the street into the distance:

DAM Series in Production: CIty View

Here are the final paintings:

"DAM Museum"

Modern Abstract Cityscape Painting-DAM Museum-Original Oil on Canvas by Erin Fickert-Rowland
©2013 Erin Fickert-Rowland, oil on canvas, 18 in x 18 in

"DAM Public Library"

Modern Abstract Cityscape Painting-DAM Public Library-Original Oil on Canvas by Erin Fickert-Rowland
©2013 Erin Fickert-Rowland, oil on canvas, 18 in x 18 in

"DAM City View"

Modern Abstract Cityscape Painting-DAM City View-Original Oil on Canvas by Erin Fickert-Rowland
© 2013 Erin Fickert-Rowland, oil on canvas, 18 in x 18 in

These paintings portray the architectural beauty of downtown Denver, and are also painted in a complementary color scheme of blue and orange- coincidentally the same colors of the Denver Broncos!

The original paintings are available for sale online at  You may also purchase prints and note cards from my Fine Art America site.

If you love architecture or the city of Denver, these may just be the perfect pieces of art to add to your collection!

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