Few artists could duplicate the emotional depth Steve Hanks achieved in his spectacular watercolors. Each painting was meticulously drawn with great attention to detail. Each of Hanks' watercolors reflected a moment in time. The viewer's reward was a grand interconnectedness with the artists’ favorite moments. These moments reflect our own experiences as well.
"Steve Hanks is a man driven by private passions,” wrote the author of an introductory biography to Steve Hanks; Poised Between Heartbeats. “He never painted to sell, but only to survive and follow his star. Each painting is a momentary glimpse through the moving curtain that hides the secrets of his craft. Each painting is a mystery that needs to be sorted out and unraveled." These words suggest something of the complexity that is Steve Hanks. A product of the turbulent sixties, Hank’s artistic vision began with hard-edged caricatures, moved through the artistic fads of the day and, finally, to a quiet celebration of the world around him.
Steve Hanks' paintings, formed by his own varied life experiences, have a universal quality that intrigues our senses with intimations of what the artist has termed "moments of introspective solitude." His sensitive images reach out to us and ask, as do the works of no other contemporary artist, "What are these subjects thinking? What are they feeling.?"
Steve's work had been the pick of art jurors since 1973. In 1990, he won the Arts for the Parks Marine Art Award of Excellence. He was a winner in the Arts for the Parks top 100 artists from 1989 to 1991. In 1991 the National Watercolor Society awarded him their Society Merit Award. In 1992, the National Academy of Western Art presented him with the Gold Medal in Watercolor.
Hanks' talent was obvious and unquestioned. His dedication to his art was validated by a lifetime of struggle and hard work. His restless mind was constantly exploring new frontiers, always attempting to touch the unknowable with his art.
"I've tried to be responsible and put positive images out into the world," said Hanks. "I hope that my work brings comfort, pleasure and insight into people's lives."
Sadly, this artist passed away in April of 2015 from cancer.
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