Alex Cohen

Alex Cohen is a painter working both from life and invention, predominantly in oils and aqueous media.  The quality of uncanniness one might feel in his subjects is also the compass by which he navigates. The sense that what is strange feels familiar and what is familiar seems strange, is not an intention to obfuscate––but rather is the result of finding the visual rules by which the painting and subject agree. In his invented pieces, the subject is arrived at through the questioning of abstract suggestions (gestures on the canvas), while his observational subjects look for an abstract purpose within the recognized subject.  Regardless of whether the source of the subject is internal or external the goal is to arrive at a painting.  The painting thus operates as a kind of mediator ushering the painter towards a middle path where the known and unknown are merged. The journey towards a complete image is like that of migratory animals or people, spurred on to new lands in search of what feels like home.