Haynes Galleries presents
“Burton Silverman: Thoughtful Portraits” Virtual Exhibition

FRANKLIN— A new online exhibition of Burton Silverman’s portraits are highlighted in Haynes Galleries’s summer exhibition “Thoughtful Portraits.” Silverman has been an icon of Contemporary Realism for decades and this exhibition presents paintings and watercolors from several periods in his career. There is a consistency in his style that is comforting but the variety of poses, formality, and intimacy depending on the subject shows Silverman’s range. The exhibition is available via a digital catalog on Haynes Galleries website and select works are available for viewing by appointment at Haynes Galleries, just south of Nashville, Tennessee.

Burton Silverman has been an exhibiting fine artist for nearly 70 years. He is most often celebrated for his portraits of people from all walks of life, from Supreme Court justices and New York City strippers. His talent lies in his ability to capture people as they are, without superficiality or grandiosity. Swaying back and forth between tighter brushstrokes for the finer details and looser brushiness for mood and ambiance, Silverman finds the balance between realism and abstraction.

Oil has been Silverman’s preferred media for his portraits over the years. His staging and composing varies from one subject to the next. Set against a blue gray wall Light Switch leaves little to identify the young woman, her head turned slightly and wisps of hair escaping from her knit cap. But the care shown to her face and expression reveals all we need. By contrast, Visitor is set amongst a cozy study with an overflowing bookcase and sunlight shining through the window. Leaning back in a chair, the man is at ease yet serious.

Silverman has also worked consistently in watercolor over the years. His portraits take on a new freshness in the medium, with the fluid quality drawing the eye around the picture to take in a stroke here and a blast of color there. From interiors like Woman on Blue Sofa to outdoor scenes like Beach Scene III, Silverman’s watercolors are an interesting avenue of his output that gets due consideration in the exhibition.

“Thoughtful Portraits” is just the latest solo exhibition and accolade for Silverman. They have followed him around his entire career. He has paintings in no less than 31 public collections around the country. He’s been commissioned by law schools and hospitals to paint deans and directors. And he has been voted by peers into the National Academy of Design, the American Watercolor Society, and the Portrait Society of America.

But even after all the honors, and all the years that have gone by, for Silverman, painting is still about the people. “I continue to make paintings of people and their place in our time because I am of that time. Out of that I hope to make pictures that are timeless.”

To view the exhibition catalog, please click here.