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Brian Rutenberg - Artists - Forum Gallery

Brian Rutenberg in his New York City studio.


Brian Rutenberg was born in South Carolina in 1965. Currently living and working in New York City, this nature-based abstract painter became a Forum Gallery artist in 2001. A graduate of the College of Charleston, South Carolina, Brian Rutenberg participated in his first group exhibition in 1985 and moved to New York shortly thereafter. He received a Master of Arts degree from New York’s acclaimed School of Visual Arts. As a young and ambitious painter, he sought to capture a unique representation of the landscape through abstraction. The base of his interest stems from growing up between Pawley’s Island and Charleston, where the river and lake merge with ocean. These early childhood memories continue to be a presence in his painting.

In 1997, Brian received a Fulbright Scholarship which afforded him an opportunity to spend seven months in Ireland. It is from his travels there that the artist’s work became shaped by the Celtic Culture, specifically the La Tene Period, 600-400 BC. Captivated by arabesques of pure abstraction, so powerful in the artwork of this period, Brian began to use a similar merging of forms in his work. Large circular shapes of color transformed his canvases into 2 dimensional dioramas for the viewer; each swirl bringing us closer to the center of the drama on the picture plane.

Inspired by artists like Gregory Amenoff, Joan Mitchell and Hans Hofmann, Brian Rutenberg executes paintings that embrace spirituality, love of color, and a passion for paint. Although nature continues to be the major theme in his paintings, each of his works shows a brand new approach and vision.

Brian Rutenberg has had over two hundred exhibitions throughout the United States. Radius Books published a full color monograph in 2008 and in 2016 Permanent Green published Clear Seeing Place, a companion to the artist’s popular YouTube series, Brian Rutenberg Studio Visits. Rutenberg’s best-selling monograph, A Little Long Time, was published in 2020 concurrently with a solo exhibition at Forum Gallery in New York. Rutenberg’s most recent solo exhibition at Forum Gallery was in March 2022. The work of Brian Rutenberg is included in the collections of the Arkansas Museum of Fine Arts (AR), Bronx Museum of Art (NY), Butler Institute of American Art (Youngstown, OK), Franklin G. Burroughs-Simeon B. Chapin Art Museum (Myrtle Beach, SC), Mint Museum of Art (Charlotte, NC), Peabody Essex Museum (Salem, MA), South Carolina State Museum (Columbia, SC), Yale University Art Gallery (New Haven, CT), and many others. 

Brian Rutenberg is represented by Forum Gallery.

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