Living with Dying: Grief, Loss, Beauty and Joy
Endured, acrylic, 10 x 8 inches, 2021
Peter Russom was born and raised in Saratoga County in upstate New York. His interest in art, specifically drawing and painting, began at a young age. Peter attended SUNY Plattsburgh as an undergraduate, where his studio work developed connections with philosophy and art history. He continued on to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where he completed the M.F.A. in Painting in 1987. He has been exhibiting his work throughout the United States and abroad for many years. His paintings are included in numerous private and public collections. Peter is currently a professor of art at SUNY Plattsburgh where he teachs drawing and painting.
About Endured Peter writes:
In my studio practice I work on twelve or more paintings for several months. This allows me to focus more on the entire body of work than on the individual paintings. This method that I have employed for more than twenty years was altered last summer (2020) when my oldest brother Paul was diagnosed with brain cancer. As our family and friends were confronted and rallied to focus on Paul’s circumstance, I knew that continuing to get into the studio was important for my own mental state. One painting seemed to be more closely linked to my thoughts about my wonderful brother. I consciously gave this work particular attention and focused on retaining those emotional and intellectual connections. Endured is a work that attempts to relay the sensations and feelings of love, trust, and faith that came forward during the five months that I interacted with Paul up to his passing away in October, 2020. On some level this experience was not new to our family yet this time was unique in several significant ways. Paul had taught me so much about life, sports, and the importance of family in a way that bonded us. He endured much more in his life than in those last months. Paul continues to teach me about generosity, selflessness, and thankfulness as I think of him each day.