Artist Statement 

 Frank Soenke Haseloff


There is a theme that runs through my paintings regardless of subject matter. The personalization of inanimate objects. We buy something that was mass produced. That is, it was reproduced repeatedly a thousand times or more. They are all the same from the factory but once we buy them and use them our individual nature starts to leave an imprint on the object. An imprint that makes the object unique to the individual. The cars the toys and tools in my paintings all show this uniqueness of ownership. They have specific wear marks, scratches and dents that tells the history of the relationship between the object and the owner. 

Cars and trucks can be very meaningful to people for different reasons like ego, status, or utilitarian. In the Car Portrait Series, I first wanted to present to the viewer this machine as a relatable object. I approached this by using a portrait-oriented view and putting the viewer directly in front of the car looking right at its “face”. I chose cars that have character and something that one could look at and have a dialog with. As the series grows, I am looking to show more of the settings and scenery regarding where these cars are found. I am looking to take this series further by including the owners themselves and getting some of the stories of the relationship with the car or truck. There is an incredible variety of car clubs, and each has their reasons for the kinds of cars they obsess over and that will be fun to explore. 

The Secondhand Stories series is about the tools, utensils and toys that have become personalized through use. The scratches, the nicks and dents become a story about relationship with these objects, so capturing them accurately is essential to the success of the painting.  I want all my paintings to breath and to feel alive and that is why I love doing realism paintings.

I find my subjects at car shows, antique stores and vintage markets and sometimes people lend me some of their treasured objects. I want to tell a story not just of the object but of the person who owned it or used it or played with it so I will again use the portrait view to showcase the uniqueness of the object.

One of the biggest influences in my approach to painting is from the Dutch landscape painters of the renaissance era. They often bring the viewer in to the painting with little details in the landscapes. I like to employ this with reflections in the cars. The viewer can spend some time looking through the painting and picking out other cars or people tucked in the bits of chrome.

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