Giving An Ancient Art Form A Modern Perspective

UNION — On Saturday, Feb. 5, at 2 p.m., encaustic artist Jonathan Deutsch will discuss how he transforms this ancient art form of painting with wax. His talk will make use of the many examples of the works currently on display in his solo show at the Les Malamut Art Gallery through Feb. 28. The Les Malamut Art Gallery (wheelchair accessible, downstairs in the Union Public Library) is located at 1980 Morris Avenue.

As part of the continuing series of gallery talks free to the public to introduce the artists and their works, this afternoon presents the opportunity to learn how an artist takes an ancient art form and uses a modern technique, silk screening, to create a contemporary work. The talk will be held in the gallery itself, so attendees will also have the opportunity to view the exhibit.


In “Encaustic – Ancient art form, modern perspective,” Deutsch will discuss how he works with encaustic and how he takes digital photographs and silk screens them onto the finished wax surface. Since a demo cannot be done in the gallery, Deutsch will bring some of his tools to explain how he works with the wax to achieve the results you see in his paintings.

Encaustics, which utilizes bee’s wax, is a form of painting that has been in use for thousands of years.  The medium, which consists of wax, damar resin and pigments, allows for a variety of techniques to be employed.  Brushes and sculpting tools are used to apply and then work the wax into the desired form.  The paint is applied to a panel after it has been heated.  After each layer is brushed on, it is re-heated and fused to the layer below.

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