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Home » News » FSU Art MFAs in NYC: An inspiring studio visit with Christian Rex Van Minnen

FSU Art MFAs in NYC: An inspiring studio visit with Christian Rex Van Minnen

Published September 29, 2013
VAN_MINNEN_Christian_LOCUS_FOCUS_HOCUS_POCUS_2012_Oil_Panel_14_x_11inThe 3rd year MFA students in Carrie Ann Baade’s Professional Practice class were lucky enough to travel to NYC last week for an educational and inspirational adventure. While on this trip, students had the opportunity to see how professionals in varying fields of art live, work, eat, sleep, struggle, and succeed.
One of the artists that was visited in his studio was Christian Rex Van Minnen. Upon meeting Christian outside his studio building, which was once a candy making factory, the graduate students followed him inside the old building. They walked up a dusty and narrow staircase, three stories high, until reaching Chistian’s small studio space on the top floor. Once inside, his brightly colored paintings instantly contrasted the worn buildings environment.

When Christian began speaking about his pieces, the students learned that he is a prolific oil painter whose work usually begins with the traditional portrait composition or still life set up. Christian then transforms the piece in to a decaying, fleshy, flora, fauna, mixture of pieces and parts that together create a juicy, colorful finished product.

A quote from one of Christian’s press releases states, ”I find myself either suppressing or indulging of my own desire to associate personal narrative to the raw visual information inherent in the material and process. Construction, destruction and reconstruction are symbiotic elements in the creative process allowing the image to fluctuate between abstraction and representation, truth and illusion, personal and archetypal.”


His newest series of work contains standard portrait compositions, complete with tie-dye faces, blending the old with the new to create a contrast not only in color, but in content as well.

After the visit, Christian threw on his baseball cap and shades, guided the students back down the rickety stairwell, and went out for a cup of coffee, just before meeting another group for a second studio visit of the day.

Needless to say, it was a visit that won’t soon be forgotten by the 3rd year MFA students.

Check out all of his work on his website.