The creative process David Schluss employs is a mixture of planning and spontaneity—sometimes he sketches first, other times he simply dives in. The preparation of the canvas incorporates glue, gesso and egg whites; the hardening creates fissures and textures establish an inviting terrain for his artistry. For David, the application of paint to the prepared canvas is nothing short of a visceral experience for he literally uses both his hands and his fingers to achieve his artistic vision. Years ago his decision to “wipe the slate clean” and start anew on a painting that was in progress was a fortuitous choice. As he laid his brushes down, and removed the excess paint, the remnant images struck him as joyful, unlike the original work itself; thus he stumbled upon a very effective hand application technique which continues to this day. Since that time, he spends more on hand soap and moisturizers than he does on paintbrushes.
Though in an article for Aventura, he credits Chagall, a”Semi-Realistic” artist and Miro a “totally Abstract” artist for providing the seeds which have shaped his style, he recognizes he is a “combination of both”. His subjects often evoke the energetic jubilance of life in a Kibbutz as well as the intrinsic role of music and movement in Jewish folklore. He intentionally offers an intellectual, contemplative or effervescent message of joy rather than dwelling in melancholia. As he explained in an article for Art World News, he knows his work as an artist is worth the intense effort it demands when “people react to your work so strongly.”
Despite finishing a Fine Arts degree in Canada, after studying in Paris and Montreal, David yearned for warmer climes and found his way to South Florida, where he established a studio and still works today. He feels that the warmer weather and brighter colors are a constant reminder of home, of Israel. In addition to galleries in Florida and Israel, the work of David Schluss has been exhibited in Hong Kong, Montreal and Nice. Though his work is recognized and housed in private and museum collections throughout the world, he maintains an active studio in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. He is so well-known in his community that his Rabbi called upon him to assist in a project Schluss later named the “Mural of Hope.” After a 2002 hate crime wreaked havoc at his synagogue, David’s skill at wiping away the undesired message of swastikas was paramount to the community’s healing process. His artistic vision guided local participants who were invited to actively participate in completing the Mural to cover the blasphemous graffiti. Schluss told the Sun Sentinel of Florida that “we want to change this wall of terror into a wall of joy.”
David Schluss is a mixture of many influences, those of his homeland of Israel with its deep traditions and imagery that continue to spark his creativity blended with his love of the vibrancy and color of his home in Southern Florida. Reminiscent of the diverse styles of Botero and Kadinsky but literally molded by hand in a new manner, his global outlook offers a unique aesthetic. Undoubtedly his body of joyful work and his selfless assistance, as described by the Coral Springs Forum, to “unite the community” gave impetus for the Olympic Committee of the Beijing 2008 Games to select David’s work to grace the Olympic Commemorative Poster. What a fitting choice! His sincerity, as shared with Art World News, is reflected in his philosophy of trying to help people “understand that life, after all, is beautiful—that we should try to make the best of the worst.” At FineArt360, we are honored to join the international community in representing the work of David Schluss.