Raymond Han, “FLORA:  still lifes”
September 16 – October 29, 2005
Opening Reception:  Friday, September 16, 7-9pm

Forum Gallery
8069 Beverly Blvd. (at Crescent Heights Blvd.), Los Angeles, California 90046
Contact: Niccolò Brooker/Marvella Muro
Telephone: (323) 655-1550, Fax: (323) 655-1565
Hours: Tuesday – Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
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Raymond Han, White Triad and Casablanca Lilies, 2004, oil on canvas, 34 x 36 inches.

“Han’s meaning is less important than his skill in creating works of transcendent beauty; an ephemeral earthly beauty we are meant to transcend ourselves.  If we briefly shut the door and close the shutters against the intrusions of our daily lives, we can allow his paintings to transport us into a metaphysical realm where we share more than unites us that divides us.”
--  John O’Hern, Director and Curator, Arnot Art Museum

Los Angeles, California – On the evening of Friday, September 16th, Forum Gallery opens Raymond Han, FLORA: still lifes.  The first solo exhibition of this master still life artist in California, the exhibition runs through Saturday, October 29th, 2005.
Consisting of fifteen new and magically rendered paintings, Raymond Han: FLORA still lifes reaffirms the artist’s reputation as one of the foremost still life artists working today.  Han follows a long line of influential still life painters including Jean Baptiste Chardin and Henri de Fantin-Latour who, each in his own century, elevated the still life to the highest level of dexterity, seriousness and appreciation.  As his predecessors, Han deftly interplays the intricacy and simplicity of formal elements with subtle brightness and softness of color, yielding creations which force us to reexamine what we have seen countless times but at which we rarely look at with intent.

The artist creatively explores the relationship between the natural and man-made. In Peonies with Blue and White China four fully opened peonies with delicately folding, light pink petals gently bend under their own weight as they sit in a nearly empty vase of water.  Beside the vase on a table covered by a white cloth rests a China cup while a bowl leans against the neutral wall behind.  As in all of Han’s still lifes, this wall acts as a monochromatic backdrop to the unfolding scene in the foreground.

A similarly harmonious juxtaposition of man’s design with that of nature is reflected in Lilies, Two Vases and Plate, Casablanca Lilies and Wooden Box and Peonies and Twin Meissen Breakers, while nearly all Han’s still lifes tacitly suggest a human involvement.  Imbued with a joyous delight of the artist’s own environment, these paintings are both humble and grand testimony to the beauty which surrounds us all in our quotidian experiences.  By inducing meditative, silent and honest moments of observation, Raymond Han implores the viewer to no longer become but to be and, in so being restore an enchanting serenity between man and nature.
Raymond Han is an American artist born in Honolulu, Hawaii, in 1931. After study at the Honolulu Academy of Arts, Han came to New York and studied at the Art Students League. His paintings are included in the corporate collections of General Electric Company; Chemical Bank, Goldman, Sachs and Company; and Moody’s Investment Service, Inc.; and in the permanent collections of the Picker Art Gallery at Colgate College, Hamilton, New York; Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut; the Honolulu Academy of Arts and the Munson-Williams-Proctor Institute, Utica, New York.

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