Artist Brad Kunkle does beautiful work depicting dreamy, sensual women in mid-motion and half-rest, but he felt like his pieces were still missing a certain element of surrealism until he discovered how to paint gold and silver leaf. He integrates the metals into his oil paintings for an effect that changes based on what kinds of lighting is used around the painting, and the reflective surfaces also shift their patterns as the viewer moves around the work.
I want to see these in person– the overwhelming torrent of gold and leaves and unruly hair begs to be touched, or at least stared at for hours. From Kunkle’s interview with My Modern Met:
“I was working on a project with a client that wanted his office walls gilded in copper, so I leafed all of the walls in copper. As I stood in front of them, it just hit me. This was the missing element in my work. The way light reacted and the way my movements interacted with the leaf was completely beguiling, and I wanted to create paintings that allowed people to feel this same surreal sense of space and time.”
His work really immerses you in that dream-like state that the women are in, with their gravity-defying positions and shimmering effects of the gold leaf. Beautiful and rich.