Michael Neary (Missouri) curriculum vitae
“I do my best work when I feel some kind of a connection with the site where I set up my easel. I look at how the whole scene ties together as it comes into my field of vision. I use multiple focal points to energize the space of a painting. Being on the street in the natural light is important to me. As light patterns change, almost infinite numbers of possibilities can appear from the same point of view, but things don’t reveal themselves at once. It takes a while. By working outside in the weather, I’ve learned to be patient while I try to get closer to painting how things really look to me. Like a camera with a very slow shutter speed, I need a lot of exposure time. People move around so quickly that they rarely show up in my work. The only person in my recent work was a friend who posed for me on his motorcycle. I’ve learned to like painting on cloudy days because colors stay more constant. On sunny days I rarely spend more than two hours at a time on a particular canvass before changing to another canvass I keep stored in my truck’s cab while it’s in progress. A few famous outdoor artists like Monet actually changed canvasses hourly as the sun crossed the sky.”
As a student in the early seventies, Michael Neary thought of himself as a neo-dadaist. Thankfully, none of that work survives. Inspired by friends, he began painting from observation at the Kansas City Art Institute and has maintained the practice as part of his process ever since. After earning an MFA degree from Indiana University, he has earned a living primarily as a sign painter, billboard artist and teacher. Neary has participated in solo and group exhibitions at galleries and museums throughout the United States. He has recently moved to the St. Louis with his wife, artist and McKendree faculty member, Amy MacLennan.
theHword.com. Give “Just Lookin” A Look.
March 25th, 2010, by Jerry Daniels
TribStar.com Portrait of a painter: Michael NearyDecember 26, 2007, By Steve Kash