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The story behind the art: Jorg Dubin's 'Pontiff'

2014 oil on linen, 36 by 24 inches

Jorg Dubin, 2014, oil on linen, 36 by 28 inches

The artist: The longtime Laguna Beach resident is known for paintings of human figures that bridge the gap between realism and abstraction. Born in Eugene, Ore., Dubin, 59, spent his teens in London, where he was influenced by classical art, before moving to Newport Beach and attending Corona del Mar High School. Dubin mentors graduate students at the Laguna College of Art + Design and is exhibiting his work in September at Q Art Salon in Santa Ana.

In Dubin’s words: “This and other paintings are an attempt to apply paint in a way that is rooted in reality, but is a lot looser, a lot less rendered in terms of a finished image. The fact that I used the pope – there was no real relevance to that, other than I think they’re just so interesting when they’re in their full regalia. The beauty of living in both worlds, realism and abstraction, is you allow people to continue to discover things in the painting many months or years later that maybe they didn’t see right away. It’s an experimental painting. I put enough information into the painting that the human brain will fill in the blanks. It’s like a chess game where, as an artist, you’re making moves and sometimes it’s the right move and sometimes it’s the wrong move. You have to keep allowing yourself to fail in the move in order to find the right move later on.” As told to David Ferrell.

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