Morgan Meets Robert Liberace

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On the weekend of October 11th, I had the privilege of attending and assisting with a figure painting workshop held by the very talented Rob Liberace. Having previously done research about Mr. Liberace and his work, I felt both a resounding excitement and a twinge of trepidation. I was overwhelmed by the fact that I was going to be in the presence of a world-renowned artist, but I was equally honored to be a part of the experience. The workshop definitely presented me with the opportunity to interact with fellow artists of all ages and refine my own skills as an art student.

Mr. Liberace’s demos were an amazing source of information about technique and obtaining one’s personal style. The extent to which he understood the human anatomy and the way it functions was astounding. His interpretation of the human figure, both male and female alike, was artistically riveting.

Though I was primarily an assistant, I was invited to partake in the long-pose sessions, which allowed me to draw the live models alongside the other students in the workshop. Mr. Liberace was very helpful with his instruction during the sessions. He did in-process advising where he walked around the studio and spoke individually with each student, giving them constructive criticism, praise, and suggestions. Mr. Liberace was even so kind as to comment on my own work!

As a result of his laid back personality, Mr. Liberace remained relatable and friendly throughout the course of the weekend. He seemed to not only embrace the role as teacher, but also the role of student. He merged himself with the group, being certain to make every student feel comfortable and at ease. He also maintained a light-hearted air to his tone that made the atmosphere fun and lively, while still remaining serious enough to ensure ample productivity from the students.

Additionally, the Gallery 2 studio at Artspace was the perfect environment for the workshop to take place. The room was cozy, private, and provided an appropriate environment for stimulating creativity and focus. The activity and the intent concentration made the sessions pass so quickly. Time flew by and every student would sigh heavily at the end of the day, wishing there had been more left to it. At the end of the weekend there wasn’t a single unhappy face or dissatisfied student.

Everyone received their own personal experience from the workshop, and it was somewhat magical to see the vast variety of work that had resulted from so many different styles, techniques and personalities. I was so impressed by the work ethic that had been displayed, and the talent that every participant had brought with them. Likewise, I know that, like me, everyone there walked away with an inspired mind, a revitalized personal style, and a brand new understanding of the human figure as an art form. I would highly recommend a Rob Liberace workshop to anyone interested in a fresh, artistic learning experience!!

 

Morgan Mathieu is a Junior majoring in Studio Art at Meredith College and an Exhibitions Intern at Artspace.

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About Annah Lee

Annah Lee is the Director of Artistic Programs at Artspace.

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