Stephen Gjertson is a contemporary realist who paints portraits, genre scenes, still lifes, landscapes and biblical themes.
Interestingly, his detailed and sometimes elaborate paintings of biblical themes seem more modern in feeling and execution than his contemporary portraits.
His portraits and quiet domestic scenes, often centered on mothers and infants, have a feeling of subtle formality and painstaking draftsmanship that carries echoes of French neo-classical masters like David and Ingres.
Gjertson’s still life paintings often involve complex depictions of flowers and the glossy surfaces and elaborate patterns of porcelain. His contemplative landscapes also show a great devotion to detail and craft, and are sometimes compared to the style of Russian artist Ivan Shishkin.
All of his works have a careful attention to composition that seems to give them a certain gravity. Where many contemporary artists will grab you with drama and flash, Gjertson uses the force of stillness and the weight of detail to draw your focus. His subjects seem imbued with a feeling of importance by the the obvious attention he has invested in portraying them.
There is a collection of his work, “Timeless treasure: The art of Stephen Gjertson” (Annette LeSueur) and he is the author of a monograph on Richard F. Lack, who he studied with: “Richard F. Lack: An American master” (Stephen Gjertson).