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About the Artist;

Loren Salazar was born in California in 1951. Graduated with Honors in 1973 from Central Washington State University with a degree in Fine Arts and Sciences. Salazar has painted and exhibited extensively in the western states of Washington, California, and Alaska. His work has been exhibited across the country and his published images are found internationally. Currently calling Cost Rica home, Salazar continues to paint image locations from Italy to South America.

His paintings were honed and effected by the end of the turbulent 1960’s. His exploration of art professionally coincided with an explosion of new music and social change. Salazar’s early art paralleled a wave of new progressive rock music and a common direction brought contacts with the music industry and with rock artists. These associations resulted in numerous album covers and music industry designs. By 1977 reproductions and cards of Salazar’s paintings were being distributed on an international basis by a California publisher.

His painting technique set him apart as one of the early practitioners of the air brush as a fine art tool. His mastery of that technique resulted in paintings the were included in the Seattle Art Museum’s Northwest Annual Fine Arts Competition. While on display at the Museum his works were singled out b y the Seattle Times for individual praise. These early works were so convincing that his paintings were at times mistaken for photography.

Salazar’s photorealistic technique developed into a long series of works based on visual memory. This involved numerous images and places occupying the same picture plane. These images dissolved in and out of one another in long horizontal compositions. Salazar had developed a technique and imagery that proceeded computer art but was essentially “Photoshop” by hand before Photoshop was available. At this point the artist’s works in the early 1990’s were being mistaken at times for sophisticated works created on computers using Photoshop.

With a desire to distance himself from what he saw as a coming concern, (digital art), the artist moved onto a technique and media that could not be mistaken for anything digital. With the encouragement of close friend and mentor Andreas Nottebohm, Salazar set fourth on a 4 year series of works on etched aluminum, a technique pioneered by San Francisco artist Nottebohm. While living near Lake Arenal in Costa Rica, Salazar’s nights were consumed creating a series of paintings based on “The "Northern Lights” or “Aurora Borealis”. This series was painted in layers of transparent acrylic on etched aluminum. From Arenal, Salazar shipped the Northern Light Series to galleries in Alaska, Washington, and California.

Since 2004, Salazar has gone full circle and has concentrated his new works to painting on a new type of canvas. A recently developed “Watercolor Canvas” has allowed the artist to draw upon various techniques he developed over the years and apply them to a common surface. The resulting works are classic images from sites world-wide. Salazar’s latest paintings are a dream like sequence titled "Light Sleeper Series". With the recent addion of floating multiple layers of painted imagery in passages of resin, Salazar is creating works that must be seen in person to view all dimensions.

Gunnar Nordstrom

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