Isolation has robbed us of human connection. We lost jobs, were separated from partners, family members, friends, neighbors, and children, many of which were permanent. This series is a celebration of humanity with a playful ambiguity, treating the human figure not as a stoic, definitive portrait, but as a body that’s full of life, randomness, beauty, complexity, strength, and resilience.
Human is a collection of figure paintings by Rusty Eveland in Gallery 2 at Da Vinci Art Alliance. Due to quarantine, Eveland was forced to shift his focus from live drawing to virtual figure studies. The loss of human connection and the intimacy of live figure studies allowed him to channel the negativity of the pandemic and present a series executed in a completely different way than originally planned.
In some ways, this new form of figure study helped Eveland because he was able to incorporate many different races, gender identities, and body types into his work. In person, it's hard to say how long it would take to get the right sessions for that kind of variety. Ultimately, the series is about how awesome and beautiful the differences are in the human race. Stripped down to line and a limited palette, we can set aside loud opinions and politics for a minute and appreciate what we all are. Human is a fight to get back to human connection, as well as a testament to what is possible in a time of isolation and distress. A series of figures in a time when we've all been separated, isolated and removed from humanity is a refreshing step away from complaining or dwelling on negativity. We’re all very different, but still very human.
Human will be on view in Gallery 2 at Da Vinci Art Alliance beginning June 3rd and will be available as a video walkthrough shortly after.