American B. 1968



B. 1968 Maryland; currently lives in Cambridge, NY


Russell Gordon is a realist artist well known for his sumptuous still-life paintings. Most recently he has included portraits of North American songbirds to his oeuvre. Bird study is not new to the artist; in fact he first fell in love with drawing as a youth while copying the work of John James Audubon. With a desire to to learn more about his native foul he would often take to the woods looking for birds to render directly from life. As an adult, perusing birds has allowed him to return to nature. He finds it refreshing and invigorating to leave the “controlled environment” of the studio in search of subject matter.


Gordon completed a rigorous atelier program at the Schuler School of Fine Arts in Baltimore, Maryland and, subsequently, furthered his academic art education under the guidance of Will Wilson. Armed with an arsenal of expertise and a strong interest in the later still life works of the Northern Renaissance painters, he began to approach his art practice with increasing virtuosity.


Gordon’s still life, floral and bird paintings are opulent, almost jewel-like, and obsessively detailed. He labors over his own paints and utilizes Maroger Medium to increase the transparency, which allows for a sumptuous layering effect. Moreover, the artist often employs chiaroscuro to create striking tension within his compositions; this technique is exceptionally successful with pieces depicting decadent vanitas subject matter. Although the Dutch Masters’ influence is pervasive, the artist manages to imbue his work with an astute contemporary feeling and a lovely freshness, making them a necessary indulgence.


Currently, Russell Gordon is represented by galleries on Cape Cod, Martha's Vineyard, South Carolina and Rhode Island, and his paintings have been exhibited across the country. In 2012 he had a solo exhibition featuring his bird paintings at the Thornton Burgess Society, Sandwich MA. He’s also received awards from The Artist’s Magazine and the Butler Institute of American Art, among others.