Artist Profile: Vail Pagliarani
Cape Cod native Vail Pagliarani is known for expressive painterly landscapes and coastal marines. He had the good fortune to study with two noteworthy instructors. First, with the accomplished illustrator and marine painter Marshall Woodside Joyce while attending Butera School of Art in Boston. At Marshall Joyce’s urging and encouragement, Vail entered and won his first serious award at the age of 18 while still a student at the venerable Copley Society of Art. After initially honing his drawing and painting skills to become a commercial illustrator earlier in his career, his interest gradually transitioned to fine art and contemporary realism.
Later, during a more mature phase, he met his second noteworthy mentor, the dean of the Boston School, Robert Douglas Hunter. Hunter’s pedigree goes all the way back to an impressive lineage of traditional atelier training and a continuous disciplined connecting thread—practices which are unfortunately diminishing in modern times. The progenitors of the Boston School who influenced Hunter and by proxy, Pagliarani, include Ives Gammell, William Paxton, Frank Benson, Tarbell, Dennis Miller Bunker and John Singer Sargent—a veritable list of Who’s Who in American art—19th and 20th century iconic masters.
Hunter became a good friend to Pagliarani, and his insightful critiques were instrumental in elevating the dedicated artist’s work to a higher level. Pagliarani says Hunter’s influence left him with a unique understanding of the process of painting, “Merely depicting a realistic representation of a landscape or marine scene is not the primary goal. Evoking an emotional connection, something inspired from that wordless center that a painter feels, the joy of expressing what Mother Nature is offering and then interpreting it in the manner that moved you in the first place, makes it unique and more meaningful. Something deeper is possible, the visual voice spoken with…
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