Jeffrey Rubin




Established Professional
Visual Arts: Photography

By Christopher Yasiejko

If you were to view the digital photographs that served as the starting points for Jeffrey Rubin’s vibrant “Ice Abstractions” series, you might not notice much color amid the ice and snow. Some of the photos appear, at first, to be black-and-white.

Buried within the pixelated reflections and refractions of sunlight, however, is a virtual palette of hues. And Rubin, who has made his career as a sought-after painter of action sports, selected from that assortment the colors that, once adjusted and pushed with editing software, became the bold shades that dominate his 40-by-60-inch works.

Untitled (from Ice Abstraction series), 2013, photograph, 40" x 60"
Untitled (from Ice Abstraction series), 2013, photograph, 40″ x 60″Rubin, of Wilmington, always has felt confident with his sense for color – he speaks of the intensity with which competing or complementary colors play off each other. In the case of “Ice Abstractions,” those interactions sometimes suggest, to him, a three-dimensional surface.

“I’m taking a painter’s approach,” he says. “I am drawing out the color information that is contained within each photograph and using it as my palette.”

Sometimes, during the development of an image he will invert the image and continue to develop it from this new perspective.

But the essence of the images in the series, Rubin says, is that they represent something close to the purest version of abstract art, as all the lines, shapes, and forms that comprise these compositions occur organically in nature and are the direct result of the elements and time.

Untitled (from Ice Abstraction series), 2014, photograph, 40" x 60"
Untitled (from Ice Abstraction series), 2014, photograph, 40″ x 60

Now 58, he recently felt a need to find a new release for the creative energy that had built inside him. He started experimenting with a small series of abstract paintings. Then he realized he could find abstraction in nature; he brought to his photography that desire to create abstract paintings.

“I find it interesting that after so many years of incorporating photography and painting in my art,” he says, “that I am now creating photographs that are like paintings – except that in this new work I am not adding paint. What I am doing is manipulating and digitally painting with the color that is inherently contained within each photograph. I do not add any color to the image that is not already contained within. My approach would never have been possible before the advent of digital photography.”

Untitled (from Ice Abstraction series), 2013, photograph, 40" x 60"
Untitled (from Ice Abstraction series), 2013, photograph, 40″ x 60″

Rubin will exhibit his work at the Mezzanine Gallery at the Carvel State Building in Wilmington in October. Visitors to his site,, can view examples of his latest photographic work and of his paintings.

Artist Website

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