Gary T. Erbe was born in 1944 in Union City, NJ where he maintained his studio for 35 years. Self taught, he began painting in 1965. In the early years, every painting Erbe created would become a learning experience bringing him closer to understanding what makes good art. This was a challenging time for him. Then he discovered and became interested in Trompe l’oeil painting. In 1969, he conceived a way of creating Trompe l’oeil paintings that would be contemporary and different from the 19th Century Trompe l’oeil masters and coined the term “Levitational Realism”. In 1970, he quit his job as an engraver to pursue art fulltime and in the mid 1970’s, he began to explore the idiom of abstraction and cubism and how it can be applied to Trompe l’oeil painting. The idea of integrating modern principles into his painting was very challenging and exciting. Bridging the gap between modern art and realism would be his vision. In fact, today his work has less to do with Trompe l’oeil and more to do with the creative process.
Erbe’s work is the creation of a synthetic sense of space derived from the combination of flat space integrated with abstract forms exaggerated and enhanced by shadow, light and color. Mr. Erbe has exhibited extensively throughout the world and has garnered many awards for his paintings. Gary T. Erbe served as President of Allied Artists of America, Inc. from 1994-2005.
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Monica Allen Perin, a painter from her youth, began her fine art studies at the California College of Arts and Crafts, Oakland, California. She subsequently obtained a Masters degree in the decorative arts (Museum Studies) at the Fashion Institute of Technology in Manhattan and consecrated her theses to the garden frescoes found in and around Pompeii.
Teaching art history with the University of Maryland she continued to teach studio art and paint watercolors of the Italian country and seaside.
Following a move with her French husband to the South of France in 1998 she expanded her repertoire to include ‘buon fresco’ painting on fresh lime plaster in the manner of the Renaissance, and is currently involved in an important project to add fresco work to the façade of the parish church in Le Pradet, France.
Monica is also a US Navy artist attached to the Naval Historical Center at the Washington Navy Yard, Washington D.C. As a ‘combat’ artist she has passed numerous weeks in ex-Yugoslavia and more recently with the Sixth Fleet in the Mediterranean documenting daily life in an operational capacity on board an aircraft carrier or logistics support with a forward deployed unit. Monica has exhibited her watercolors in Italy, the US and in France, in particular in Marseille, Toulon (awarded best in show for watercolors at the Salon des beaux-arts 2002), and most recently in Cannes where she was awarded the silver medal at the salon international des arts and culture.
Monica teaches watercolor painting and fresco from her studio in France.
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