John Beerman’s “Seen and Unseen: Paintings from North Carolina and Normandy”

Please join us on Satuday, November 11th from 5 – 7 PM for the opening reception of John Beerman‘s Seen and Unseen: Paintings from North Carolina and Normandy. 🖼️

In Seen and Unseen, renowned painter John Beerman brings together new work created both at home here in North Carolina, and abroad in Normandy, France.

“To see freshly, to discover something luminous below the surface of the commonplace is my challenge,” says John Beerman. “By laying down paint on canvas, I try to represent a moment in time with its subtle order and its specific nuances of color and light.”

Perfect lighting conditions can be fleeting, so Beerman will often revisit a location for days in a row at an appointed time to create small plein air studies. These studies are then taken back to his studio, where he spends months translating them into large-scale paintings. Experimentation and discovery are at the core of Beerman’s artistic practice. Paint is applied and removed, layers are created, covered and then perhaps unearthed later.

“I believe there is a lifeforce in the materials I work with” says Beerman.

Embracing the life and will of his materials and combining that with his own vision for a painting leads to the landscapes for which he is so well known.

Beerman has long had a presence on the national stage, and his work can be found in the collections of some of the most prominent American institutions, including The Metropolitan Museum of Art and The Whitney Museum of American Art. Closer to home, his Three Trees, Two Clouds is an icon of the North Carolina Museum of Art’s collection. This is John Beerman’s fourth show at Craven Allen Gallery; he spent much of his career in New York, and now resides in Hillsborough.


“Art is a fusion of the real outside, and that which is inside us”

                                                                          Edith Schloss

I observe closely the “real outside,” stay attuned to “that which is inside” and venture to make paintings based on that overlap. While constructing and shaping an image, I am using the visible world, material and cultural knowledge, intuition and temperament as my guide. The work, the labor, is to bring a painting to the surface that represents a fusion of that rich material.

Every painting is an adventure, and as such, it often goes through many changes— paint applied, paint scrapped off, the surprise of pentimento— before arriving at a place that seems to be somewhere I didn’t know I was looking to go. The finished painting feels like finding something both forgotten and essential. I would like my paintings to communicate something of that discovery and to convey deep good feeling.


John Beerman is a landscape painter and North Carolina native and current Hillsborough resident whose work has been exhibited nationally and internationally. John received his degree from Rhode Island School of Design, and he attended the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture.

His 35-year career has garnered recognition at the highest levels of fine art. He has received several awards and fellowships, including the Pollack-Krasner Foundation Award and the Yaddo Artist Colony Fellowship. His work is in the collection of numerous museums across the country, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; and the North Carolina Museum of Art, Raleigh.

Among other public collections, his work is at the Duke University Cancer Center, the Duke Endowment, and the North Carolina Governor’s mansion. He also has completed several public commissioned works, including an 85-foot mural for the Milstein Family Heart Center at New York Presbyterian Hospital in New York City and a painting for the UNC-Rex Hospital in Raleigh.


Nov 11 2023


5:00 pm - 7:00 pm


Craven Allen Gallery
Craven Allen Gallery
1106 1/2 Broad St., Durham, NC 27705
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