Robert Goldstrom - "Bank Paintings"
Robert Goldstrom is an artist living and working in Brooklyn, NY. He learned to paint as an illustrator, earning gold and silver medals from the Society of Illustrators. His work has appeared on the covers of Time, the Atlantic, and New York Magazine; in the New York Times and The Boston Globe; posters for the New York City Opera; stamps for the UN; and illustrations for the children’s book, “Dream Away.” Eventually, his desire to paint full-time won out and since 2004, Robert has divided his time between Brooklyn and Provincetown.
Robert Goldstrom, "East River Panorama"
oil on canvas, 3' x 6,' 2016
In his bank painting series, Goldstrom investigates a familiar Brooklyn sight in an ever-changing cityscape. "I've been painting Brooklyn, and more specifically the Williamsburg Savings Bank Building, for a little over ten years. Much has changed about the place in that time and several of my favorite views are gone or obscured, and though it's not always mutual, the love affair continues. I'm not a nostalgist, retracing my desire for the time before the high-rises took over. I'm a realist, always looking for the poetry to be found in the city the way it exists. And the poetry is still here, if you're available to it."
Goldstrom's bank paintings are reminiscent of the famed Thirty-Six Views of Mt. Fuji, the series of ukiyo-e woodblock prints in which artist Hokusai investigated the iconic mountain from dozens of pastoral viewpoints all over Japan, each with a distinct atmosphere, mood, and palette.
Hokusai, "Cushion Pine at Aoyama" woodblock print, circa 1830s
Robert Goldstrom's oil paintings also investigates a iconic and familiar Brooklyn skyline sight from many angles, elevations, times of day, and seasons, a kind of multi-faceted and wide-angle-lense view of an ever-changing city. Whether the focus is on a recognizable street corner, subway station lamp posts,or a calm and quiet snow-blanketed evening, the bank building is ever-present, a feature that remains a constant through the swirling eddies of change that are always at work in New York.