San Francisco: Intellect and Passion
California impressionist painter Ken Auster has created a stunningly fresh and vibrant book –– a collection of oil paintings of his favorite city, San Francisco, that represents a fifteen year compilation of his work. The book’s rich images vibrate with the passionate intensity of his work, powerfully conveying the colorful vibrancy of that great city.
Auster is a well known California artist with his own gallery in Laguna Beach and a growing reputation as a leading American contemporary painter. Having grown up surfing from an early age, Auster first became renowned for his classic surf art. But even that came after years of designing and silk screening t-shirts. When he seriously began painting with oils, he found it to be so much more free and dynamic than the rigid parameters of silk screening.
Auster has said, “Painting is a dance between passion and intellect,” a concept he feels so strongly about that he chose it as the title of his first book. He particularly enjoys exploring the boundaries between nature and man-made objects. Especially known for his dynamic brushwork, Auster also has an exceptional eye for the subtleties of color. “I work only in oils, and my paintings are ‘very juicy,’ very loose and very of-the-moment.”
Auster’s rich and evocative images of The City by the Bay include plenty of downtown traffic, thick with cable cars, streetcars, buses, taxis, pedestrians, deep urban shadows, and traffic lights. He brilliantly conveys the constant movement of the City. In the book, these are balanced by images of bridges, boats on the Bay –– sailboats, ferries, freighters and tugs –– and also by soothing images of green spaces, headlands and night scenes. The book is also rich with images of San Francisco’s iconic restaurants and bars, including a priceless image of a bartender at the Buena Vista making twenty Irish coffees at one time.
The book is beautifully designed, with the images of Auster’s paintings given a glossy finish on matte pages. This spectacular book makes a fabulous gift for anyone who loves San Francisco.
"very page resonates with that vibrant, textural brushwork . . . so appealing in Auster’s work."
–– Art blogger Charley Parker
2011, 60 pages, 8.5” x 12”, full-color cover and insides, 68 full color images of Auster’s art, many full page. Published by Ken Auster.
ISBN 978-0-939431-37-3. trade paper