Stephen Mangum is a representational painter born in 1954 in Mississippi and currently living and working in San Francisco, California. His work varies among figurative, portrait and still life formats to document themes of temporality, transience, and fetishism in an expressive contemporary realism style. Recent exhibitions include “I Remember Thinking I’ll Remember This” at the Diego Rivera Gallery in San Francisco; the 2016 Left Coast Annual juried competition at Sanchez Art Center in Pacifica, CA; the 3rd Annual Juried Show at the Piedmont Center for the Arts in Piedmont, CA; and the 2015 “Art of the Heartland” competition sponsored by the Southwest Artists Association in Mena, AR. His work is in private collections throughout the US.
The most intriguing aspect of humanity is the many ways we are different and yet very much alike, unique creatures with common experiences, emotions and frailties. We define our individuality or commonality by the way we dress, the objects we possess, and the activities we undertake; all expressions of our identity. Our lives are simply the pursuit of internal fantasies, complicated by external realities we confront as we pass through this plane of existence.
My ambition is to make engaging representational paintings that reflect the complex texture of human life, temporal and transient, using realism constructed with an expressive visual language that reflects my interpretations of our existence, contemporary phrases in the verse of life. Through reflections of our world that speak to us and about us, my hope is to make art worth looking at.