Stephen St. Claire
Stephen St. Claire was born and raised in the northern suburbs of Los Angeles, California, graduating from Art Center College of Design in Pasadena. Working with oil paint since he was a child, he has spent most of his adult life exploring different facets of art and design. St. Claire currently has working studios in both Asheville, NC and Dallas, TX where he works with his wife Joy who is also an artist.
St. Claire’s oil painting technique is called “Dialuminism”. His unique genre of paintings are created first by sculpting the composition onto the canvas with layers of modeling compound and gesso, then carefully covering the entire surface with Italian aluminum leaf. Oil paint is then applied to the metal and each piece is finished with several layers of solar-resistant resin. The light plays off of some areas and casts shadows beneath others, creating a dimensional painting that changes in appearance depending upon where the viewer is standing in relation to the light source.
“I am a painter and I am always in “learning mode” every day. But when I approach art this way (always inquisitive, not as having “arrived”), I am open to new creative ideas. Because of this inquisitiveness I have come up with a form of art that is (happily) all my own. I call it “dialuminism” which is a compound Greek word that basically means “light passing through” and it’s what I call my art genre because that’s how it works. I paint on metallic leaf and so light reflects off of that metal and shoots back through the paint, basically creating a back-lit oil painting."