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The Last Working Block on the Bowery

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About Me


My Background



Jeff Kinzel has been working with the medium of foil for more than twenty years, applying it to both abstract and figurative subjects. Born and raised in New York, Jeff pursued his initial art studies at the Art Students League and the National Academy, also working as a studio assistant to painter Ellsworth Kelly. Later, he undertook graduate art courses at the University of Iowa. Jeff’s paintings and foil works have been featured in exhibitions abroad as well as in New York, Iowa, and North Carolina, including solo shows in Castiglione del Lago, Italy, and at the Black Mountain Arts Center. Jeff has taught extensively, both in the public-school system and as an independent arts educator. He currently runs a small school on a farm in Mills River, and maintains an art studio in 



Foil as a Material

Description of work 

 Foil is something we all encounter on a daily basis, in commercial packaging—book covers, cigarette cartons, wine labels, and so on. The viscosity of the gel medium creates a textured surface on my canvases that looks (and almost acts) like paint. The foil is very thin, and adheres to every crevice of the painted stroke. The foil comes in a wide range of colors, tints, mattes, and metallics. 

Most of my work is on canvas, but I have also used paper and metal as substrates. I have created techniques for layering foil, using gel medium between each layer. Light reflects off individual layers of foil. The quality and intensity of the light will change the look of the work: dim light may bring out a matte surface, while bright light may cause the metallics to glow. The very composition of the work may change, as values flip 180 degrees, positive becomes negative, colors merge with neighboring colors, and images appear and disappear.