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international painting annual 4 exhibition-in-print
online resource

Kevin Muente
Erlanger, Kentucky

Northern Kentucky University, Professor

detail image


My desire to explore the human experience via the metaphor of landscape led me to include figures within nature. I hope that the viewer reads these as metaphysical senses of place. The natural landscape serves as a backdrop to moments of human action, but the emotions conveyed tap into grand, universal themes.

I aim to make these events "feel" as real as possible through an attention to detail in hopes that they overwhelm the viewer. In an age where photographs are so readily available I lend importance to the image by the meditative act of rendering it in paint.

After conceiving an idea for a painting I undertake vigorous photo shoots and cull through dozens of reference photos before I start to paint. I look to my painting heroes and often borrow or adapt gestures, scenes, and compositions to have deep conversations with art history. I cast my models as archetypes and they often in some way have lived these roles. The paintings portray facets of the universal human condition such as loss, doubt, wisdom, and faith as to enlighten and remind viewers of their own humanity.

On reflection, I realize that these cinematic paintings depict people facing the most elemental conflict in nature—life and death—and they ask more questions than they answer.





born: 1971, Milwaukee, Wisconsin



University of Cincinnati, MFA 1999

University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, BFA 1995


selected awards/honors

Summerfair Aid to Individual Artists Grant, Cincinnati, Ohio, 2013,2009

Summer Fellowship, Northern Kentucky University, 2010

Al Smith Fellowship Award, Kentucky Arts Council, 2006


selected publications

Manifest International Painting Annual, 2014,2013, 2010

Get Real, Museum of Contemporary Art, Jacksonville, Florida: Agility Press p.72-79

New American Paintings,Southern 2012,2008,2006

Stitches in Time on the Olympic Peninsula, 2009


selected solo or two-person exhibits

Into the Wild, Richard Demato Fine Arts, Sag Harbor, New York, 2013

Traces, Gross McCleaf Gallery, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 2011

Places in Time, Heike Pickett Gallery, Versailles, Kentucky, 2010


selected group shows

GET REAL, MOCA Jacksonville, Jacksonville, Florida, 2014

Northern Kentucky at 506, 506 Ash Gallery, Erlanger, Kentucky 2014



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