Singular Focus: Variations on a Theme by Chuck Larivey

Koi and Lillies by Chuck Larivey

Virginia artist Chuck Larivey’s Singular Focus – Variations on a Theme collection is one to behold! Larivey is known internationally for his captivating use of translucent light in oil paintings. Specializing in vibrant atmospheric and water effects, Larivey has a fabulous new collection of koi fish and water lily paintings that we are excited to display at the Stravitz Fine Art Gallery on Laskin Road.

Larivey began painting koi and lilies in 2010, inspired by the koi fish at Maymont Park in Richmond, Virginia. He has always enjoyed painting flowers, and he quickly came to love the artistic freedom this subject allowed him in terms of colors, composition, size and scale. He also loves that this is a subject that can be enjoyed by anyone, anywhere in the world. Larivey has enjoyed having one “singular focus” to paint, as he feels this has allowed him to improve and perfect his new style of hyper-realism.

The artist has always been fascinated with light and reflective objects. Understanding light and color as one and the same comes naturally to him. In all his paintings, he follows light and expresses it through vibrant colors. In his koi and lily collection, this is especially apparent in the green lily pads whose color pops out of the dark water.

Chuck Larivey’s new collection will be on display at the Stravitz Sculpture and Fine Art Gallery on Laskin Road through the month of April until May 3rd. Come and experience these beautiful new works!

Charles Kello: In His Own Words

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Oil Painting of Norfolk Docks by Charles Kello


As dictated by Charles Kello

Oil Painting by Charles Kello


Charles W. Kello was born in the Ghent section of Norfolk on August 19th, 1942. The son of a terrific commercial artist, Charles W. Kello Jr. and “Myrt” his mother. He is the first child among five children, introduced to art at the age of nine. His dad stated that young Kello “Just never stopped painting”. Since then, he began to receive awards as early as age twelve and even now at age seventy-one. As a teenager, he was an illustrator for several printing companies, before photography was what it is now. In order to reproduce ships and buildings, they had to be painted in detail, the reduced before printing. This gave him a firm foundation for his painting.

Charles is proficient in drawing, watercoloring, oil and acrylic. He has devoted his later years exclusively to oils. He has mastered landscape, seascape, still-life, florals, and portraiture. Charles states that this is a “Feat rarely seen in any artist”. This statement was also made by Vincent Price who bought several paintings from Kello in 1963. The following year Kello had a one-man-show in New York on Madison Avenue, which was a total sell-out. Kello has paintings in collections around the world. He commented, “From South Africa to Alaska, I have been quite prolific and painted over 5,000 pictures”. As one collector said “I have been looking at one of the landscapes I purchased three years ago and I still have not found everything in it”. “Last Flight”, a painting by Kello, was acquired by the Norfolk Museum, now known as the Chrysler. Kello teaches classes in oil at his studio in Norfolk. That is my “little painting factory”. Richard Stravitz Gallery on 30th Avenue and Pacific Street is the exclusive agent for Mr. Kello’s work.

The Old Print Shop | New York City as Art or Imaging the City.

It’s always so interesting to see a progression of a state, or city, or country even. What is different now? What stayed the same? I would love to see this exhibition! The oldest painting is from 1671!! Wow!!


The Old Print Shop on artlineNew York City as Art or Imaging the City. A spectacular exhibition containing prints and paintings from 1671 to contemporary artists using New York City in their art. The Old Print Shop, January 10 – February 7, 2015

The exhibition covers almost 350 years of art based on New York City as a theme. The earliest is Ogilby’s Novum Amsterodamum from 1671 and ends with images by a group of contemporary artists.

The earliest images of New York City, (then only Manhattan) date from the third quarter of the seventeenth-century. Very few were produced as there was not much here with the exception of a great natural harbor and a navigable river. During the eighteenth-century there are a few images of New York City produced and in interesting group of maps. The real romance of images of New York City begins with the Hudson River School era. So many…

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10 things that being an artist taught me last year

This is some great food for thought for all you artists out there, no matter what medium you choose!

emily_jeffords-web-cip_01252014Last year around this time I wrote a list of 10 things that being an artist taught me in 2013, and many of those things ring so true today too. Things like, “Your fingers can create more than you think they can” and “A creative community is incredibly beautiful and worth cultivating…”

This year, I feel like I’m building on these things and adding a few more to the list as well.
Such as:

  • Ask for the things you would like. Dreams require a little boldness and a lot of follow through.
  • Practice the habits that help your creativity.
  • When you feel trapped by the expectations that are put on your work (by yourself or others) change it up – pronto.
  • Rest. Creativity has a hard time working in a tired mind.
  • The first thing you have to do is pick up the brush. Then, make as many mistakes…

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Surreal Paintings by Micha Arkhipoff

Oil on wood  by Micha Arkhipoff

Oil on wood
by Micha Arkhipoff

This is one of the great oil paintings on wood by Micha Arkhipoff, that we have at our Laskin Road gallery in Virginia Beach. He is one of our newest artists to have work displayed. The little tag that you see below the rose says “Maison de Bonmeur” which translates to “House of Happiness”. Arkhipoff’s style is quite similar to that of Salvator Dali’s. Very three-dimensional, mystical, and definitely surreal.

On the shores of time lost Oil on wood by Micha Arkhipoff

Ok, so I have to show you one more example of his work. Just look at all of the symbolism and how detailed it all is. You can’t help but feel that the artist is trying to send some sort of message to his audience.

We do have one more painting by him at our Laskin Road gallery in Virginia Beach, VA, but you’ll have to come in to see that for yourself. I do realize that some of you may live no where close to Virginia Beach so instead you can click here to see the other painting. And feel free to browse around the rest of the site!

Advertising in Alumni and Sports Magazines

Article written by Richard Stravitz

Some time ago it was discussed about the possibility of selling the idea of making a bronze mascot or other sculpture to a number of colleges, universities, and or athletic organizations in the United States. More to the point it was thought that it would be best if we first applied our efforts to the states of Virginia and North Carolina to make follow up and coordination easier than if we spread ourselves too thin around the country. I know an effort was made to get the idea in to several colleges in the area, but with little success that I am aware of. I am going to throw out a different approach to getting us accepted into the schools and athletic organizations in the area mentioned above. Keep in mind, if it works in this limited area it could work in Canada, England, Germany, etc.. anywhere the colleges and sport organizations and their sports organizations. I tried to get a sample of the sports organizations without much luck. It looks like the Alumni info is easy to get and their magazines are generally published quarterly. Sports info and magazined will (it seems), require some digging and interpretation. What are we trying to do? We are trying to present our Mascot and Sports bronze sculpture program. We would like to advertise our sculpting expertise by buying spaces in Alumni and Sports magazines. If there is an interest in what we are advertising they can visit our website here:!commission/c6m3 The difference in this approach is that we are offering advertising dollars and if the Alumni and/or Sports organizations want it, we can produce exquisite sculptures reasonably priced that will make them proud.