Traditional Taos painter of figures, still- life, and landscapes, artist Ron Barsano was born in Chicago, IL in 1945 . He has lived in Taos, NM since 1970. “When I was a kid”, he says, “an illustrator lived next door and I’d hang around and watch him by the hours. From there on in, it was just a matter of getting through grammar and high school. As soon as I was free I headed for art school. It was as simple as that.”
At 17, Barsano fulfilled his dreams by entering the American Academy of Art in Chicago and studying under William Mosby. He received the Mosby Scholarship in 1966, graduated in 1967, spent two years in the Army, and then moved to Taos in 1970 to paint. A quiet but outspoken man, he believes that “Taos light is as no other, except the south of France. I know many cases where someone has looked at a painting and could tell immediately that it was done, not just in New Mexico, but in Taos.
He begins with a loose drawing and then lays in the lightest and darkest color values before adding the full color block-in for the finished effect. “I do this block-in carefully,’ he says, “because I don’t want to have to go back into the painting too much and risk loosing the spontaneous feeling.” Critics say “he’s not afraid to use brilliant color, but he uses it so skillfully that his paintings whisper. They never shout” When the paint is dry is “the time to put myself into it” according to Barsano. He says “an artist can affect a painting, the spirit it sends out, after the work is finished.” A founding member of the Taos 6 contemporary artists group in the 70’s.