Robert Hartshorn

Prices range from $1,200 to $20,000

Limited Edition Giclee on Canvas

Original Oil on Canvas

Original Pastel on Paper

Artist Information:

Rob Hartshorn was born in 1953, raised in Philadelphia and is now based in the Tremont Arts District of Cleveland, Ohio. He is a fourth generation artist whose creative journey has followed the inspiration of his maternal grandfather, architect and artist Walter Antrim; “The act of painting is its own reward” was his first lesson, and the sale of an early “masterpiece” for $25 in 1960 made his grandmother his first patron.

Early in his career, Rob wandered from medium to medium and subject to subject until he found a home in his late twenties in Classical Realism, an artistic movement that places a high value upon skill and beauty, combining elements of 19th-century neoclassicism and realism. His arts education was to research and experience firsthand the writings, works and techniques of great masters of the past; Vermeer for delicate colors, Bouguereau for luminous flesh, Raeburn for subtle expression. This adventure of discovery found him in museums, studios and private collections from New York to London to Beijing.

In practice, there have been many contemporary mentors, masters and ateliers that have influenced Rob and shared their love of traditional technique with him.  And now after five decades of painting, he has found his own path; six years ago he opened Hartshorn Studios, an art collaborative, devoted to portraiture and figure painting. He has found success in simply painting and continuing to share the techniques that others have shared with him.


Always a lover of chiaroscuro, Rob explores the evocative beauty of light playing over the human figure. His poses are academic in tradition, but with a minimalist, modernist twist. He hopes that people viewing his work see the immediate beauty that he sees without further interpretation.

Oil on fine linen is his medium. Extensive glazing is his method. His palette is extremely sparse but complete. Like so many before him in the academic tradition, Rob is inspired by the endless nuances of poses in working with live models. He looks for subtle expression in the body; an inner emotion expressed in an outer form or contour.  Sketching, painting and digital media is employed to capture movement and gesture.

Recent Work

The current selection on display includes works painted of one model, Theresa. To the artist,” Theresa is a young woman whom everybody loves for her strength and spirituality. I found her vulnerable and reserved in her posing…and visually luminous. In the painting, I left her so…demur but seductive …. in a sea of negative space that accentuates her vulnerability.”


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