Artist David Iacovazzi-Pau is passionate about Louisville’s artistic community — so passionate that the movers and shakers of that world become the subjects of his portraits. His traveling exhibition, titled “Paintings and Works on Paper,” opens Sunday, Jan. 3, at Jewish Community Center’s Patio Gallery.
The 25 pieces in the show include Louisville notables like musician Will Oldham, film producer and investor Gill Holland, “Project Runway” contestant Gunnar Deatherage, music producer and Wax Fang drummer Kevin Ratterman, painters Russel and Shelley Hulsey, and performance artist Cynthia Norton, to name a few.
In a press release, Iacovazzi-Pau says he was very picky about the subjects he chose, and the process often took up to a year to complete per a series of portraits. The Luxembourg-born artist created these works between 2012 and 2015.
“I wanted to shine the spotlight on Louisville’s artist community,” he explained. “There is an authenticity I like. The artists are true to themselves.”
The portraits are created using oil, graphite and other forms of media. Iacovazzi-Pau also included a self-portrait in the exhibit, which he likes to do in most of his shows.
“It’s a bit like how Hitchcock used to do some kind of cameo in his films,” he says. “It’s just fun.”
Some of the people Iacovazzi-Pau selected he knew, and others he didn’t. Regardless, after the time spent with them making the portraits, he says he now knows them on a much deeper level.
And the respect for process goes both ways.
“It’s an incredibly beautiful experience to be captured by another artist I respect so much,” says Gunnar Deatherage in the press release. “David has such a keen eye for his subjects and portraying an emotion and an energy rather than what the everyday person would see.”
Iacovazzi-Pau came to the Louisville area in 1997 after studying at colleges in Luxembourg and Belgium. He attended Indiana University Southeast and now lives in the Highlands.
“Paintings and Works on Paper” runs from Jan. 3-Feb. 9 at the Patio Gallery, 3600 Dutchmans Lane.
An opening reception is planned for Sunday, Jan. 3, from 2-4 p.m., and many of the portraits’ subjects will be in attendance. It’s free and open to the public.