The Couch Series 2019

Oil on Canvas

What is more gripping than sitting on a park bench or at a café people watching? Observing individual’s body language, facial expressions and interactions is fascinating. Ones posture, movement, nonverbal and verbal behavior reveals a fascinating personal story you can only imagine.


The oil on canvas paintings in the series depict intimate moments; we can hear the figures internal voice and dialogue that may reveal a moment of truth, self -realization, emotional clarity, honesty, acceptance or authentic understanding. One might even call these settings a defining moment and the place where these moments often occur is comfortable and dear to us, the couch.


“The Couch Series” illuminates unreserved human characteristics - including images of thinking, feeling, sexuality and identity within vulnerable personal surroundings. 


I want to create art which captures, represents and examines the beauty of human emotion, the passionate conditions of love and loss, of one’s personal place on earth and spirit. The couch is a place of comfort, recreation, sexual intimacy, vulnerability and often times; of intense relationship dialogue.


Throughout my life I have been drawn to the palette of impressionist painters, the human figure and the emotional spontaneity of abstract expressionism.


The instantaneous scrutiny of my subjects speaks through the individual’s body language and portrait. I’m fascinated by the contortion of hands, feet and facial expression; nonverbal interactions repeatedly shed light on emotions and thoughts.


The combination of boldly capturing light and shadow stimulated my way of expressing the human emotion within the personal interactions taking place before me.


From a very young age we search for what defines us and makes us passionate. In some paintings couples peer directly at us, are we the voyeur or are these two-dimensional figures of light, form and color reflections of the viewer?


This series of nine 30” x 40” oil on canvas paintings began in mid 2018, with the last painting completed in February 2019.

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Live Model Spontaneity Series
Watercolor On Paper

The live model inspires Barry along with the spontaneity of watercolor’s instant brush stroke permanence made while interpreting the model.


The imperfections and random movement of watercolor as it dried inspired Barry to enlarge the figures to extreme proportions. The figures, once enlarged, became magnificent abstractions of flaws. Imperfections inspire him; they reveal the inherent vulnerability of humanity upon our existence. The originals vary in sizes of 4”x 6”, the archival enlargements vary in sizes of 50”x 32”.


As Barry Interprets the body’s form, creation and outcome guide water into shoulders, calves, eyes and lips. Light and shadow emerge and define the model as one exclamation in time. In the beginning color is both light and shadow.


Muscles twist across watercolor flesh from light’s darkness creating the future figure similar to emotional absence and presence in human relationships.  The outcome is always unpredictable.

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My passion for studying the live model and observing human interactions was awakened in my youth

while attending life-drawing classes at the Brooklyn Museum.  Formalizing my academic career with a BFA from the School of Visual Arts in NYC, my artwork continued to be strongly influenced by people’s physical, emotional and spiritual communications within social settings.

As a native New Yorker my professional journey has been quite diverse; from advertising art director

to a jewelry design upstart to corporate manager. In 2015, I added author to my artistic accolades with

the publishing of Two Pans and a Pot, a cookbook about family, push-ups and fresh foods.

Returning in 2017, to my longtime passion, I'm oil painting on canvas and interpreting the live model by virtue of watercolors. The couch series represent my work over the past year. As a student at the School of visual Arts and throughout my career I've been drawn to the palette of impressionist painters and the emotional expression and spontaneity of abstract expressionism.


Thank you for your interest.

For inquiries or commission requests contact

Barry Sayewitz today.


Barry Sayewitz



New York, NY

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