Frederick Brosen (1954 - )

Frederick Brosen, one of America's finest watercolor artists. These striking works are infused with the architectural romance of New York City. By focusing on the time of day around him and the city, Brosen brings an awareness of New York as a place of history and limitless experience. At dawn, Brosen travels on his bike in quest of new subjects, when the streets are devoid of the hustle-bustle of daily metropolitan life.

With painstaking care and commitment, he sketches a scene, photographs it, and sketches again. Finally painting, Brosen builds his color by starting with light washes and adding layer after layer of rich tone. The results are crystalline and sophisticated images that reflect each location through the intimacy of countless details. There is a haunting familiarity about these cityscapes, whether you’ve seen the views they depict many times or never before. They are the iconic views of New York.

Brosen looks for places where incredible streetscapes have created themselves, from Central Park to SoHo, where factories, garages, churches, and homes sit side-by-side along a side street; where mosques, temples and churches and banks coexist with skyscrapers, carriage houses and tenements. He finds sculptural ornaments and classical scrolls, gargoyles, cornices and signs, wrought iron and water towers. These components reveal that there is still an old New York that coexists with the new.

A native New Yorker, Frederick Brosen began his studies at City College of New York, graduating in 1976. He studied art at the Art Students League and at Pratt Institute, receiving his MFA from Pratt in 1979. Mr. Brosen has been recognized with a Silver Medal of Honor by the Royal Society of Arts & Letters in London and a Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant. Watercolors by Frederick Brosen have been acquired by the New York Historical Society, the Knoxville Museum of Art, The Museum of the City of New York, Frye Art Museum (Seattle) and the Metropolitan Museum of Art and are in many private collections.


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