John Hrehov “A Survey of Work”

Denise Bibro Fine Art

poster for John Hrehov “A Survey of Work”
[Image: John Hrehov, Four Seasons (Diptych), 2021, oil on canvas on panels, 24 x 36 in.]

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The work of John Hrehov evokes his continued interest in the theme of man co-existing with nature present throughout his entire career. The artist uses shades of white, black, and gray in his drawings and various gradations of black in his charcoals focusing specifically on urban settings and juxtaposing patterns onto the surface. His paintings have a bold character due to their vibrant saturated color and defined geometric structures. The palette enhances the drama of these unique forces living side by side.

For more than thirty years of work, Hrehov has explored and developed his signature mode of allegorical realism. His art is a meditation on the natural and spiritual world, infused with surrealism and mystery.

When working in oil, Hrehov takes great liberties with color, lending depth, and richness, whereas his charcoals are rendered with a labor-intensive pointillist technique, drawing attention to the surface. Architectural structures, statuary, trees, and animals populate the artworks and become the characters of the artist’s multi-layered metaphorical messages. Hrehov’s compositions eschar perspective, embrace symmetry, and assign equal visual and symbolic weight to their components. The work achieves not only visual but energetic and spiritual balance, providing a transcendent refuge.

When comparing the great regional mid-west painter Grant Wood and recent works of Hrehov, who is also from the Midwest, noted and well respected Art Historian Donald Kuspit wrote the following:

“…Wood was an American Scene Painter, and for both the so-called American Heartland is the scene that best epitomizes what American stands for: sober decency, family values, comfortable security…Both Wood and Hrehov paint with deft, studied clarity, a kind of Flemish realist precision that seems to mock the world they paint while rendering it with excruciating, respectful care…”

Kuspit suggests that Hrehov was even more ironic in his painting than Grant. Hrehov appears to understand more in the context of current times and about the universal appeal of nature.

John Hrehov has had numerous solo and group exhibitions throughout the country. Recently his work was displayed at the Cleveland Institute, Cleveland, Ohio. Some of his most recent solo exhibitions include Indiana-Purdue University, Fort Wayne, IN; Wood Street Gallery, Chicago, IL; Fort Wayne Museum of Art, Fort Wayne, IN; Yvonne Rapp Gallery, Louisville, KY; Wheaton College, Wheaton, IL; and Denise Bibro Fine Art, NYC. Hrehov’s awards include the Gladys Emerson Cook Prize in the Area of Prints, Drawings and Pastel, 167th Annual Exhibition National Academy of Design, NYC and the Eastman-Bolton Memorial Award, Cleveland Institute of Art. His work has been reviewed in Art in America, American Artist Magazine, Louisville Courier-Journal, and The Journal Gazette of Fort Wayne, IN. Hrehov holds an MFA from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He is a Professor in the Department of Fine Arts at Indiana-Purdue University, Fort Wayne, IN.



from October 22, 2021 to December 03, 2021


John Hrehov

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