Mark’s oil paintings are all about the beauty in nature. He paints landscapes which include aspen trees, waterfalls, rivers, sandy cliffs, ponds and rock formations; he purposely omits living animals or human beings. I feel the genre of is painting style can be classified as hyper-realism with a little mix of influence from American Impressionist artists. He focuses in on the finite details controlling the hard and soft edges on the canvas surface. To achieve texture, in the work, he relies on lighting, shadows, shapes, forms and true earth tone colors.

Nature, tree, rivers and the beauty of the environment has always been important to Mark. Today as an adult, he still loves trekking through the woods. According to Mark; “I take photographs of the areas I am drawn to. The exploration outside and taking photos of interesting places, are part of my artistic process. The process continues in my studio. I typically use two to four photographs to compose a scene. After completing a few small rough sketches to work out the composition I draw directly on canvas with pencil using very few lines. The thing that is most important to me is that the viewer is able to emerge themselves into the scene and ponder.” View his work at close range, it may look abstract; but step back and you can see the realism in his work.

Stop by the Mandel School Art Gallery and enjoy your stroll viewing nature’s pathways. Common’s work is on the second and third floors in the building. The gallery is open and free to the public. Artwork is available for purchase. For further information about the artist, please contact, gallery curator June Hund ( or 216-368-0722).

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