Contemporary Realism Painting Studio of Dana Levin

Charcoal Portrait Carole and Ken

Carole & KenThis is a charcoal portrait commission recently finished of a warm, fun, and good lookin’ couple near Boston.  They will keep the original and give gifts to their children of digital reproductions that I will have made.  What a great gift idea!

Accepted into Women Painting Women Juried Exhibition at Principle Gallery, Charleston SC

D.Levin,oilonlinen,ForwardSweep,22x26I just found out that my painting Forward Sweep, 22×26 inches, has been juried into the Women Painting Women exhibition at Principle Gallery in SC.

I have been watching the Women Painting Women exhibitions since they began in 2010 and am honored to be included.  The show opens September 5th- 125 Meeting Street, Charleston, SC.



New Painting Calm Winds at Trees Place

CalmWinds,30x36inchesHi Friends, this is a painting I just finished, I hope you like it- 30×36 inches.  Available at Trees Place.  It has a beautiful floating frame from Guido’s. ;-)

What was your last creative risk?

Really, September was my last post on FB!?!  I am still alive. (even though I am not seen on social media) ;-)

I have been absorbed in a metamorphosis.  But I am breaking out of the chrysalis now.  (my kids watch a lot of Wild Kratts)

It is impossible to go through life without change.  If one does, it is out of fear or lethargy.  When an artist goes through changes and sees the world in a different way our art must change too.  Its no good to anyone to continue making paintings just because you have always made them that way- your art must reflect your life.  That is what I have been going through.

First, I realized that I saw things in a different way.  What I needed to express had changed.  Second, I had to find a new method of creating in order to bring the vision in my head to the outside world.  It is really not a simple or easy thing to do.  It’s a very organic process, which is scary because you don’t completely know where you are going and if what you are doing is going to take you there.  It requires trusting your instincts and a lot of experimentation.

Interestingly, one of the things that helped me keep my faith in the process is the work my husband does which has nothing to do with the art world.  He works very closely with engineers.  Our shared challenge is that engineers and artists both create something in the physical world that was not there before.  Seeing the investment and failures these companies experience- very much trial and error as with sincere art making- has been inspiring.  Considering my risk is much less than millions of dollars and dozens of people’s livelihood, it gives me courage.

Creativity requires risk- having the fortitude to break things down and build them back up.

I am someone who “lives in the myth”, as Joseph Campbell might have said.  I’ll explain.  Last week a pipe froze and burst in my studio.  It flooded.  We discovered this about 11 pm.  The plumber who quickly came over, assessed that he had to break through the wall of my studio to get to the pipe to fix it.  So there he was, midnight, hammering down the wall of my studio.  Symbolic for the creative process?  Tearing down walls in order to build something new?  Love it.

In the coming weeks my walls will be re-built.  Physically and Metaphorically. Con Forte!


Portrait Commission of Anne

16x20 oil on linen Portrait Painting Commission

16×20 oil on linen
Portrait Painting Commission

Here is the finished portrait painting commission of Anne Rosenfield.  Working with her and her husband Noah has been so wonderful.  “Wonderful” is a total understatement.



New Painting Finished

symmetry1 symmetry2

Symmetry, oil on linen, 17×44 inches.

Hard to find an image that really reflects the strong impact of the painting.  But if you would like to see it larger, click on the photo.

Hope you like it!


Explanation of my painting The Sacred Love

The-Sacred-Love oil on canvas, 11×14 inches

A friend was asking the meaning of one of my paintings.  Sacred Love- it currently resides at The Ettinger Gallery.
Sacred Love is based on the painting by Titian- Sacred and Profane Love- Amor Sacro e Amor Profano.  In the Titian painting it has been up for debate which of the two women depicted is representing the sacred or the profane love. It was first assumed the woman in the white wedding dress was the sacred and the nude woman was the profane.
I believe the nude women seated on the fountain is the sacred one.  She is on the right side of the canvas, as apposed to the left- in Italian, La Sinistra- the sinister.  The nude female on the right side is also higher with her arm lifted up, closer to heaven,.
I included a plum fruit in my painting. Fruit in general symbolizes our corporal desires, our earthly pleasures.  And the vessel in the center is a symbol I often use.  Vessels are protective containers for delicate and special earthly objects that one highly values.  Objects that a person might even consider close to the divine.  It also represents the mothers womb. The introvert in me also loves the idea of something being able to hide-out in there!
In terms of composition I used part of the image from the Titian painting (the image of sacred love) in the above right corner to reflect and draw the viewers eye to the vessel, as if the personification of sacred love is looking inside.

Dear friend- I hope this sheds some light on the subject!

New Still Life and Landscape Paintings

Hi Y’all

(Yes, I am from the South- Miami is “South”)

Here is a paintings I just finished.  Hope you like it.  Also, a shout out to my dear daughter Golda, who just turned one!

Red Still Life goldaribbon.JPG

Trees Place Exhibit August 4-9

I’ll be showing new still life paintings with Jeffrey T Larson and Steven J Levin.  Opening is this Saturday August 4th from 5-7pm- if your on the Cape stop in-I’ll be there.Whirl

Trees Place Rt. 6A at 28 Orleans, MA

Still Life at Ettinger Gallery

Heaven and Earth

Heaven and Earth, 18×24.  At Ettinger Gallery.


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