Thomas Kegler

Thomas Kegler

Artists Statement Poetry of Place

Through my work, I strive to bring an awareness and respect for God’s creations and their temporal qualities. They provide an infinite supply of beauty and inspiration. I paint traditionally - mirroring a time when academic training and processes were embraced and nurtured. This approach has given me the skills and knowledge to express myself through hand, head and heart.

I wanted to be a painter from the time I could first hold a brush. Many of my earliest memories are of exploring at the kitchen table with my siblings using paper, cardboard, crayons, scissors and glue. Today, using oil paints, my visions and emotions are given a voice through the infinite variations of color notes. Experiences are what I am called to paint… the materials, technique and subject are the vehicle.

Painting is a humbling experience… often the more you learn and grow, the more challenging it becomes. The many hours and days spent interacting with my subjects have opened my eyes to subtleties such as intricate color and value shifts, and beauty in the overlooked. Something new is revealed each time I visit the canvas. I paint daily - it is as necessary to my life as breathing.

Nature itself has been the most humbling instructor. I am awestruck at the visual inspirations that emerge around me in the outdoors. The sounds, smells, and tactile qualities that I experience while in field cannot help but be infused in the work. I strive to impart a universal quality that makes the viewer feel he has been there and can relate to the image.

Whether in the field or the studio, painting is integral to my life… a product of my faith and experiences.

"With Humility comes Wisdom” - Proverbs 11:2

b. 1970 “There’s as much beauty in a dead tree as in a live one.” Thomas Kegler’s observation, shared in a Drawing cover story, embodies the confident humility that has influenced his growing volume of work, considered to be among the most influential of our time.

An internationally recognized artist, Thomas is a self-taught realist painter and accomplished educational film producer. He is also a renowned art educator and champion of future artists, young and old. The wilds of New York State and a close-knit family of designers and entrepreneurs shaped his early love of art and the outdoors. Fly fishing and guiding in Alaska’s backcountry cemented his pursuit of a life path illuminated by sunlight more often than lamplight.

His work draws on the Masters’ approach to canvas, plein air techniques, and a deep Catholic faith. Each piece celebrates creation’s grandeur and mystery through careful attention to often-overlooked subtleties.

Thomas is recognized as an Associate Living Master by the Art Renewal Center; a Master Roycroft Artisan; member of the NYC Salmagundi Club; Painting Instructor for the Grand Central Atelier in New York City; and Senior Fellow with the Hudson River Fellowship. His work is showcased in galleries, collections, and publications worldwide, including Plein Air Magazine and the American Arts Quarterly. He lives in Western New York with his children.


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