Troy Stith is an American self-taught artist residing in Columbus Ohio. Where do I start trying to describe the remarkable artwork that Troy creates? His passionate layered freedom with the brush, used with a contrasting tightness and control, there’s a subdued energy that is almost spilling over but then held back to depict the realism of emotion. I love both his abstraction and his portraiture, the anguish, the sense of subtle surrealism and a strong belief in uncovering the personality and the soul; all evident in the eyes that speak so strongly in many of Troy’s paintings. Impactful and edging on the extreme, his language through his art communicates directly with your subconsciousness. I cannot stop staring directly into the eyes of paintings such as Qualm. Troy is an artist that is still discovering different styles, for me however, when he mixes his love of abstraction with his emotional figurative art I feel he’s creating masterpieces and I really cannot wait to see where Troy takes his inspirational artistic journey next.
Self taught or art school?
If you could own one work of art what would it be?
Hmmm that’s a tough one, as I’m sure everyone says haha. Although my work tends to focus on abstraction, I would love to own any of Lucian Freud’s work. His textured brushwork and color mixing skills, always leaves me staring at his work for hours.
How would you describe your style?
I would describe my style as ‘frenetic abstraction’. I like to capture the energy that goes into my work. This was something I consciously made the decision to do, by not covering all of the primary work with softer layers. I discovered this as I painted some of my first portraits. I wanted to keep those raw brushstrokes to illustrate the life that went into the piece.
Where are your favourite places to view art?
I like to view art everywhere! But seeing art in person still remains my favorite way to view it. I’m the person at the gallery/museum/studio, with my face as close as possible to the painting.
Who are your favourite artists and why?
As I mentioned above, Lucian Freud is up there. I’d also put Gerhard Richter in the top lot because of his continuous exploration of art. From his soft photo-realistic work, to his beautiful abstractions. The spastic styling of Jean-Michel Basquiat has always intrigued me as well.
Here’s a short list of some of my favorite contemporary painters, exploring the medium for all it’s worth: Christian Rex van Minnen, James Austin Murray, KwangHo Shin, Eric Lacombe, Francisco R. Malonzo, Fabian Marcaccio, and the list could go on and on. There’s so many great creatives out there, and so little time to see them all.
What or who inspires your art?
I try to be open to inspiration anywhere I go. I love going outdoors and nature provides a never-ending supply of interesting sights to provoke ideas. Music also plays a large part in my creative process, while I’m not musically inclined, I appreciate the love and effort that goes into it. People who are following their dream to the fullest, always inspire me. No matter what they’re doing, they’re following what they know is right for them. That passion is something that burns in all of us, but has to be stoked in order to grow.
Where’s your studio and what’s it like?
My studio is a converted extra bedroom. It’s a maelstrom of creation at the moment. Since it’s a smaller space, I have the essentials (easel, storage, laptop, etc…) in there , but the rest of the space is being eaten up by canvases and supplies.
Do you have any studio rituals?
I always light a candle or incense and start playing music when I first get into the studio. My next step is to pick/peel off the dried paint from my butcher trays. This part reminds me of the piece I just completed, and the clean slate I’m starting with for the new painting. I’ve also been known to break out into dance when I’m really into the music and the piece I’m working on. That could also be late night delirium kicking in as well, not sure which, I just go with it!
What are you working on currently?
I’m currently treading the path of abstraction and I will continue to do so. I’m interested in where it will take me and I want to keep incorporating new ideas and materials into my work.
Where can we buy your art?
I’m in the process of putting together a webstore right now. If anyone is interested in purchasing any of my work or would like a commission, they can contact me on my site www.troystith.com
What are your ambitions?
I’m striving to shake the 9-5 shackles that I’m currently bound to, so that I have all that time for what I really want to be doing. I also want to keep expanding my gallery horizons and participating in more shows. Overall, I want to keep creating and pleasing as many eyes as I can along the way.