Originally from Raleigh, North Carolina, Charlie Van Wagner began painting at a young age but didn’t become serious until he moved to New York City and embraced the arts. For the last 18 years Van Wagner has been painting in New York City and the San Francisco Bay Area, but has recently returned to his hometown. He studied at the School of Visual Arts and the New School in New York City, Santa Reparata (SRISA) in Florence, Italy, and in the masters program at the Academy of Art in San Francisco. His primary medium is oil on canvas, but also works with acrylics and charcoal.
His most recent work has evolved from travels to Africa and southern Europe, focusing on the portrait and landscape genres. Prior to this he created a California series around wine and landscape from Napa, Sonoma, Mendocino, and Marin Counties. Upon leaving the Bay Area he visitied all the National Parks and created another landscape series based on those parks west of the Mississippi. Most recently he has begun a “sports” series focusing on epic events in the sports world like the Ali-Liston fight or Agassi’s last US Open. All of this work has been completed in the last three years.
Van Wagner is a classically trained artist in an Atelier style and typically works from photographs personally taken by himself. However, he is beginning to move towards a more impressionistic and abstract method unhindered by classical rules.