Self-taught Florida artist Paul Tamanian is well known for his sophisticated and innovative, large-scale paintings and sculpture.
The studio: Paul Tamanian Studio is based in Tallahassee, FL. Though he has a detached studio, Tamanian works outside on his physically challenging art, battling yellow flies, sweat and pop-up showers.
The artist: Born in upstate New York, Tamanian largely grew up in Clearwater, FL. He graduated from Florida State University with an interior design degree and worked in a variety of jobs. At about age 40, he decided to concentrate on being a full-time artist.
In the beginning: Took a pottery class with a girlfriend at a local arts and crafts center. From there, he began experimenting, often in his kitchen, with forms and finishes, but never settled on one style or shape.
After a five years as a successful ceramic artist, Tamanian put his clay work aside to experiment with aluminum and paint.
The goods: Large abstract paintings on aluminum with textured surfaces in a variety of finishes. Also aluminum and steel sculptures. Works, some10 feet or larger, are a mix of organic and geometric shapes.
The materials: Aluminum, water-based auto paint, acrylics and a variety of other mixed media. Air and water are often sprayed to alter texture, color and surfaces.
The process: Unconventional, labor-intensive work that involves pounding, scraping, sanding and layers of paint for each piece. Brushes are never used, said Tamanian, though he has used sticks and box edges.
What’s popular: Large, abstract, color-textured paintings on aluminum. ($4,000 to $12,000).
Other favorites: Three-dimensional, indoor-outdoor metal sculpture.
His style: Abstract and highly experimental, said Tamanian, who is not formally trained in art, but believes he has a good sense of design.
Thomas Deans, who has represented Tamanian in his Atlanta gallery since 2012, describes the artist’s style this way: “A kind of gestural abstraction with which he is very inventive.”
Big break: Having his clay work exhibit at the Fay Gold Gallery, a contemporary gallery that opened in 1980 in Atlanta.
Any fun, special or unusual requests: Many over the years, including:
- A Ferrari engine painting.
- A 20-foot-long painting for the dining room of a Boston restaurant.
- A four-panel painting to complement an area rug and Chiluly glass wreath of flowers in the lobby of The Pinnacle office building in Atlanta.
- Two, 14-foot sculptures and more than a dozen paintings for a client’s home in the Tampa Bay area.
What’s new: A sculptural series of mixed-media surfboards. See or buy at Studio E Gallery ($7,500 to $8,000 at studioegallery.com) in Palm Beach Gardens.
Where to buy: Thomas Deans Fine Art gallery in Atlanta. (thomasdeansfineart.com). Also several galleries in Florida (see website).
Get social at:
- Website: paultamanianstudio.com