The painter Scott Kahn’s entrancing quasi-pastoral scenes and psychological portraiture traverse the boundaries between contemplative immersion and surrealist dissolution. Kahn was born in 1946 in Springfield, Massachusetts. He received his undergraduate degree from the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, and, in 1968, studied at the Art Students League with Theodoros Stamos. Spending most of his adult life in the Northeast, primarily in New York City and in small towns, the painter's practice reflects an abiding sense of solitude contemplating nature.
Expressions of recognizable architecture and piercing portraits of his artist friends and family occur among private landscapes from Kahn’s amblings outdoors, often at night. The feeling of reveling in a romp through the woods is contrasted with the artist’s highly controlled brushwork and attention to detail. Focal points suspend maximal blues or tornadic yellow skies to meet individually visible elements—blades of grass or stars—built up over or onto luxurious textures to create atmospheric scenes that ignore walls between exteriors and interiors.
A graduate of The Mason Gross School of Arts at Rutgers University and two-time recipient of the Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant among other awards, Kahn’s painting in oil continue experimenting with psychic shifts created from undulating regions of color across his canvas, we are encouraged to search deep within his decisively arranged palette as well as the psychological terrain it conjures.
- Darla Migan, Ph.D., writer and researcher based in New York City