LAA Welcomes Artist/Teacher Michael Reibel: March 20

By Carol Otto Cole

If you are a painter, you’re likely to fall in the 90% category of those who consider themselves “recovering” from a too-literal brushwork style, resulting in overworked paintings that leave your viewing audience underwhelmed. Never fear, help is available. Michael Reibel, who will speak to LAA on Wednesday, March 20 (please note, this is not our regular Tuesday meeting), will grant you that there are no shortcuts to practice (study, draw, paint, repeat). But Reibel, a fine artist/teacher with a background in Health Care Management Accounting and Administration, knows how to develop a plan for success that can restructure your thinking from the get-go. Yes, even the dyed-in-the-wool habit mongers out there will restructure their thinking before touching brush to canvas.

Born in the Blue Grass Country of Kentucky (Louisville) and currently living in Beaufort, Reibel has his own tissue-grabbing story to tell about how he came to the Lowcountry with his family nearly three years ago to indulge his creative pursuits and “retire” from the data-driven world of accounting. Since that time, it’s obvious he has been working tirelessly to elevate his game with an emphasis on design being less literal and more interpretative. Learning how to “capture a feeling of light and emotion through vivid color and abstract shapes” is a guiding principle Reibel imparts to his students, in his classes offered at The Studio School, Savannah.

Reibel, a strong painter of oil landscapes, challenges himself in his approach to painting by not painting things per se but defocusing just enough to see the interaction and balance between shapes, forms, and values that, once painted, convey to the viewer a thing such as a porch, tree swing, or marsh. When satisfied with his value tones and “armature” (basically how your eye travels over the painting), he goes to work, adding or subtracting colors, light, or shadows to suit his artistic fancy. Coming from a generation of painters where “realism” may as well be a four-letter word, Reibel shines brighter than the evening star in his ability to loosely create and maintain dynamism from stage one of a painting’s execution, as witnessed by an Exactaholic and writer/painting student of Reibel’s. He considers his art to be trending toward Impressionistic Abstraction (don’t try Googling;, it’s not there). Examples of this in his work can be seen at local galleries, including the I. Pinckney Simons Gallery in Beaufort and Wells Gallery at Sanctuary Hotel Kiawah, SC. Digital images are offered on his website (mreibelpaintings.com) and on his Instagram (mreibelpaintings). What he brings with him on March 20 will further bring the mysterious genre he’s introducing into clearer focus.

You know you want to come! Join us at the Skidaway Island Presbyterian Church on Wednesday, March 20 with a Munch-Sip-Meet-Greet that begins at 6:30 p.m. followed by a short business meeting at 7 p.m. Stay to bask in Reibel’s artistic descriptions of receding tides, shifting shadows, and the mottled light of Coastal Carolina. The Landings Art Association welcomes anyone interested in attending ($3 guest fee).

For information about LAA, visit www.landingsart.com or email Membership Chair Pam Reynolds (drpamr@gmail.com).