Vincent Smarkusz

Undiscovered American Genius in Modern Art

"Aura View" Portraits

"Aura View" combines Figurative Expressionism with abstract Color field painting

In addition to painting Mythic-realism Eden Frolic dreamscapes during the 1960s, Smarkusz also created abstract portraits of figures viewed through Color-field auras of light.  We call these Aura View portraits.  Vincent painted them through the '60s into the '70s, right up until his death in 1974.
With these strange but intimate portraits, the artist presents the human figure as both a sensual object and an abstract subject.  He draws the viewer inward with postural distortions and visual ambiguity. At the same time, he immerses his figures into patterns of color and light - like theatrical scrims representing fantasy, mystique, and emotion.
We are thus challenged to view his figures through these subjective transparencies as auras of imagination.  Through these effects the viewer becomes momentarily transfixed - suspended in the imaginal space that opens up between the viewer and the view, and between the figures and their ground - commingling in an oscillating kaleidoscope of suggestions, emotions, shape and color.