R einhold Schwenk was born in Göttingen, Germany, at the end of World War II. His visual arts journey began with an apprenticeship to a design studio in Karlsruhe at the age of sixteen. His assignments included painting enormous billboards for movies like Gone With The Wind and creating store window décor for local businesses. Later Reinhold attended the Werk-Kunst-Schule-Wuppertal, a Bauhaus-style art school, where he learned all aspects of graphic design. With encouragement from school friends and teachers, Reinhold made a big decision: in 1966 he left his home, moved to New York City and enrolled in the School of Visual Arts. His talent was immediately recognized by a professor who then landed him a job at Doyle Dane & Bernbach, the most influential ad agency of the era. In no time, Reinhold rose from studio assistant to Art Director to Creative Director, producing award-winning ads in print and television for international giants like Volkswagen, Audi, American Airlines and for cultural icons like The New York Shakespeare Festival.
After thirty years of focusing on client goals instead of his own, Reinhold quit advertising, moved to a farmhouse in bucolic Bucks County and took up painting at the atelier of still life artist Frank Arcuri. There Reinhold learned to create light, shadow, and form with oil paint on canvas. And, like other artists who started in advertising and moved on to painting, his graphic design background profoundly informed Reinhold’s painting style: one of distilled composition, and bold focus. His first show of still life paintings at the JS&B Gallery in NYC was a sell-out. He went on to paint landscapes, flowers, animals, abstracts—whatever intrigued him.
Inspired by his artistic hero, Gerhard Richter, Reinhold refuses to be confined by one style of art. He continues to push beyond his comfort level and look for new concepts and new techniques. The striking element of Reinhold’s œuvre is that he prefers to create groups of work rather than single paintings. Multiple images allow him to synthesize and tell a more layered story. One such series is ‘Painting Cancer,’ seven large landscapes depicting his personal experience overcoming cancer. These paintings are on permanent display at The Mount Sinai Hospital, Hess Center for Science and Medicine, NYC.
In 2018 Reinhold designed and oversaw the construction of his own art studio. This inspiring new space allows him to spread out and work big. His latest series, ‘east beach,’ is the first body of work created in the new studio and marks the realization of images he has been contemplating for several years. The vast flat beaches of the Georgia coast, transformed twice a day by tidal ebb and flow, feature infinite horizons, dramatic skies, and exquisite light. Each of Reinhold’s paintings in this new exhibition capture the dynamic intersection of land and water and sky.
Thank you for viewing my website and you are welcome to visit my studio the next time you are in Bucks County. —Reinhold Schwenk, 3.1.19
JS&B Gallery, Manhattan…Anderson Fine Arts, St. Simons GA…Grenning Gallery, Sag Harbor, NY…Stover Mill, Bucks County PA…The Philadelphia Sketch Club, Philadelphia, PA...State Museum of Pennsylvania, Harrisburg…Phillips Mill, Bucks County, PA… 2011-2017 Artists of the Gallows Run, Kintnersville, PA, an art benefit for land conservation in Bucks County.
2010 Hughes Award at Phillips Mill…2010 Best Oil Painting Tinicum Art Fair…2011 Art of the State, State Museum of Pennsylvania, Harrisburg…2015 First Place Photography, Tinicum Art Fair.
Permanent display... seven large landscapes depicting a personal journey called Painting Cancer at Mount Sinai's Hess Center for Science and Medicine, 1470 Madison Ave, NY 10029