Work of the Week: Robert Gilbert’s Times Square Crazy Night

Robert Gilbert's Times Square Crazy Night, 30×24, oil paint on canvas

The artistic aspirations of Robert Gilbert had humble beginnings: “I think I started [painting and drawing] about the time I discovered that birthday cards created by grandchildren were held in high esteem by grandparents,” recalls the artist. Needless to say, in the years since his work has become much more ambitious, as well as more technically skilled. (Unless he was a birthday card-creating child progidy, that is.)

But to Gilbert, whose work has appeared in numerous galleries since he started painting professionally approximately ten years ago, painting is much more than a technical exercise: It’s a chance to establish an emotional connection between artist and viewer. Such is the case with his Times Square Crazy Night, ABN’s Work of the Week. “I want you to feel the power on the streets and the dominance of the buildings, but also feel the excitement and rush that is all around you,” writes the Virginia-based artist. “I want you to hear the sounds of taxis, people talking on phones, trucks backing up and the occasional siren… I want you there, on the street, being jostled, excited and nervous all at the same time… I want you to put yourself into my paintings and say, ‘Yes, I’ve been there and that’s exactly what it feels like.’”

Though he has never lived in New York, the city’s iconic buildings serve as one of Gilbert’s major creative inspirations—perhaps due to the fact that, before he pursued art as a career, he got his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in architecture. And while many of his paintings are landscapes done in subdued Earth tones—a result, he explains, of “growing up in Seattle with its grays, blues, greens and browns”—the artist pays tribute to the Big Apple with his New York series of paintings, more of which can be viewed on his Website.

More information on Gilbert and his paintings—his New York series, portraits, landscapes and waterscapes alike, in addition to Giclees and high-quality prints—can be found at robertgilbertsart.com.

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