Internationally-Renowned Realist Art Exhibition Opens at Sotheby’s Los Angeles

Internationally-Renowned Realist Art Exhibition Opens at Sotheby’s Los Angeles November 27, 2018
Randalf Dilla - Tribute to Luna: The Parisian Life 2017. 152.4 x 213.36 cm | 60 x 84 in. Oil on canvas.

The Art Renewal Center (ARC), a non-profit educational foundation dedicated to realist art and skill-based training techniques in the visual arts, is taking the world renown ARC Salon Exhibition to the west coast. The show will consist of 89 Contemporary Realist works selected from over 3,750 entries from 69 countries. The most prestigious realist art competition in the Americas and perhaps the world, the International ARC Salon offers over $100,000 in cash awards, as well as international recognition through partnerships with prestigious magazines, galleries, and museums, including exhibitions and a strong online presence.

After its conclusion at the Salmagundi Club in New York City this past October, the exhibition is now on its way to Sotheby’s Los Angeles (2029 Century Park E. #2950, Los Angeles, CA) from December 4—13, 2018. The Grand Opening reception will be on December 4th.

Now recognized as the largest competition dedicated to realism in the world, the exhibition associated to the competition brings together an eclectic grouping of works from different styles, themes, mediums, and world views; showing the rich cultural diversity that the world of 21st century realism has to offer. Approximately 50% of the works in the show are available for sale, and the other 50% are on loan from private and institutional collections.

Kara Lysandra Ross, Chief Organizer/Curator of the exhibition and Co-Chair/Chief Operating Officer of the Art Renewal Center, tells us, “Realism in the visual arts is something inherent to human existence. From the earliest beginnings of humanity, our species had an innate desire to depict the world around them and express what it is to be human through realistic imagery. From the first cave man drawings, to Ancient Rome and the High Renaissance, all the way through to the 19th century, realism was the chief form of artistic expression. There has been a shift back towards realist art in the past 30 years and it is an expanding international movement as this exhibition demonstrates. The Art Renewal Center promotes the idea that 21st Century Realism captures the contemporary way of life and is both self-explanatory and timeless. It is a unique form of communication that is universally understood by people around the world regardless of which languages they speak. This makes this form of art relevant for all humanity, now, and for generations to come.”

The Art Renewal Center’s International ARC Salon Competition is known for not only recognizing work by nationally and internationally acclaimed artists, but also for discovering new and upcoming talent. Exhibiting artists include American artists such as Joseph McGurl, Benjamin Victor, Candice Bohannon, Julie Bell, Sadie Valeri, Steven Levin and Casey Childs, Swedish artist Nick Alm, Spanish Artists, Aurelio Rodriguez Lopez, Ruben Belloso Adorna and Mikel Olazabal, Argentinian painter, Alejandro Rosemberg, Jesser Valzacchi from Brazil, French artists, Joke Frima and Yoann Lossel, Philippe Attie from Haiti, Patricia Alonzo Diaz from the Dominican Republic as well as many others.

The final stop for the live exhibition will be at the MEAM Museum (C/ Barra de Ferro 5 Barcelona, Spain) from February 8—March 31, 2019 with the ARC Award Ceremony and Grand Opening on February 8th, 2019. – GM

Vanessa Lemen


Harmony in the Ebb and Flow



50.8 x 40.64 cm | 20 x 16 in

Oil on panel

Harmony speaks of the strength we find within ourselves. Most often times, it is elevated by way of embracing the unity with others. Amidst the continuous fluctuation of life in all of its beauty and all of its chaos, there is a peace and calm that arises from this understanding as strength and then the sharing of that strength becomes essential. The wider the embrace, the greater the harmony and the stronger we all are for having shared and lifted each other up.” – VANESSA LEMEN

Jun Liu


Dark Incense



80 x 60 cm | 31 1/4 x 23 1/2 in

Tempe and oil on linen

Tired aunt – my granddaughter used these two words of her limited vocabulary to describe this painting. Actually, I find a really unusual beauty in the moment the person in this painting rubs her eyes in exhaustion.

The Miao Nationality is a kind, hardworking group of people. Their dressing can show their wisdom and hard work. I like the elaborate costumes and the styles worn in my paintings.
It took me almost half a year to complete this piece, and I continually adjusted the style from the period of tempera paintings in the Netherlands and the classic canvas style at the beginning to create the painting that is now in front of you.” – JUN LIU

Alia El-Bermani


Hear Me



101.6 x 76.2 cm | 40 x 30 in

Oil on aluminum panel

Hear Me depicts a young African-American woman in profile with her eyes clenched shut, mouth agape and the word ‘roar’ scrawled into her short, side hairs. She stands in front of a decorative off-white, richly patterned fabric that suggests opulence, yet is wrinkled, flawed and fraying at the bottom. My intentional play on words in paint is an effective reminder of the current culture we find ourselves where women continue to fight for equity in all realms of life.” – ALIA EL-BERMANI

Ming Yu


In Bvlag



40 x 50 cm | 15 1/2 x 19 1/2 in

Oil on linen

This work is on loan from a private collection.

In Bvlag is a portrait of Sergey, a Russian painter I met in Prague. I was immediately drawn to Sergey’s unique personality. When he sat in front of me, I could see his character traits switching back and forth between stubbornness and persistence. I painted this piece on a beautiful afternoon. Through the window, the outside world looked like a fairytale kingdom, but the wall behind him separates him like a border from reality outside, which he hasn’t managed breaking down yet. The sunlight symbolized hope. Suddenly he paused and all of a sudden it was as if all this man’s misery melted away, replaced by a moment of hope which has been hidden deeply inside him.” – MING YU

Katsu Nakajima


Woman in the Forest



162 x 162 cm | 63 3/4 x 63 3/4 in

Oil and gold leaf on canvas

“In Japan, deep and vast forests are often called ‘jukai’ (oceans of trees). They are considered a spirit world and people are often afraid to step into them. It is believed that dense, dark and humid forests grown over millennia have a magical power beyond time and space and can deceive and bewilder people. My recent paintings are based on the theme of deep forests and women figures. They represent my perception of the chaos of human mortality through the mystique of jukai.

The scene represents the encounter of a spirit world and a human. The woman is more an embodiment of multitudinous gods or a spiritual image than a human. She can also be seen as a shamanic figure, as in animism or shamanism. Essentially, I may be trying to capture the border between life and death in my paintings.” – KATSU NAKAJIMA

Sadie Valeri


Art Nouveau Embrace



50.8 x 66.68 cm | 20 x 26 1/4 in

Oil on panel

“Still life cannot help but imply characters and narrative, and many of my still life paintings explore the themes of protection and shelter. In Art Nouveau Embrace, the central vessel stands like a queen with her subjects around her. However, instead of sheltering or hiding them, she is opening her embrace, presenting her subjects with joy.” – SADIE VALERI

Julie Bell


Speak Softly



121.92 x 152.4 cm | 48 x 60 in

Oil on linen

“One of the ways in which Nature inspires my spirit is in the back-and-forth cycle between creative and destructive forces. It seems to be the breath of life that keeps everything going, pumping along like a heartbeat. The tigers in my painting purr and nuzzle one another in a warm cluster of comfort and familial love. Their teeth are visible to us and we clearly know their capacity for ugly and powerful destruction, but we only see gentleness and trust in their display. It’s a body language that we recognize in our own human social interactions.” – JULIE BELL

Randalf Dilla


Tribute to Luna: The Parisian Life



152.4 x 213.36 cm | 60 x 84 in.

Oil on canvas.

“This painting is my tribute to Juan Luna’s artwork The Parisian Life. This is one of the most famous and controversial of Luna’s artworks, not only because of the meaning where you find three significant personas of the Philippine history, but also because of the purchase of this artwork for a high price by Government Service Insurance System. At that time this Government agency was not in a good situation. The floating figures are the characters in Luna’s painting and the tied male figure in the bottom symbolizes the Philippines in the Spanish Colonial period (1521 to 1898).” – RANDALF DILLA

Images courtesy of the Art Renewal Center

Article by Danielle Gallo

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