Roland Petersen

Woman With Colored Rocks, Acrylic on canvas, 32 x 23 inches

Woman and Colored Rocks, 2004

Acrylic On Canvas

32 x 23 inches

The Engagement, The Engagement Party Picnic, Acrylic on canvas, 54 x 47 inches

The Engagement Party Picnic, 2016

Acrylic On Canvas

54 x 47 inches

Leaving the Picnic, Oil on canvas, 1960, 57 3/4 x 47 1/2

Leaving the Picnic , 1960

Acrylic On Canvas

57 3/4 x 47 1/2  inches 

California Rock, Acrylic on canvas, 44 x 48 inches

California Rock, 1972

Acrylic On Canvas

48 x 48 inches 

Satellite Series, Acrylic on canvas, 71 x 68 inches

Satellite Series, 1972

Acrylic On Canvas

68 x 71 3/4 inches

Cherries Have Pits, Acrylic on canvas, 67 x 61 inches

Cherries Have Pits , 1985

Acrylic On Canvas

67 x 61 inches

Landing Fields and CLoud Patterns, Acrylic on canvas, 20 x 26 inches

Landing Fields and Cloud Patterns, 1974

Acrylic On Canvas

20 x 26  inches

Spring Garden, 1962

Gouache on paper

22 x 15 inches 

Rowboat, Acrylic on canvas, 48 x 36 inches

Rowboat, 2006

Acrylic On Canvas

48 x 36 inches

Clouds to Water, Acrylic on canvas, 30 x 50 inches

Clouds to Water, 1974

Acrylic On Canvas

30 x 50 inches

City Windows 2, Acrylic on canvas, 58 x 40 inches

City Windows 2, 2000

Acrylic On Canvas

58 x 40  inches

Picnic With Red Flower, Acrylic on canvas, 67 x 85 inches

Picnic With Red Flower, 2009

Acrylic On Canvas

67 x 85 inches

Figure in a Landscape, Acrylic on canvas, 36 x 60 inches

Figure in a Landscape, 1974

Acrylic On Canvas

30 x 60 inches SOLD

Cloud Shadow With California Delta Fields, Acrylic on canvas, 10 x 14 inches

Cloud Shadow With California Delta Fields, 1974

Acrylic On Canvas

10 x 14 inches

Picnic With Two Trees, Acrylic on canvas, 2004, 31 x 41 inches

Picnic With Two Trees, 2004

Acrylic On Canvas

31 x 41  inches 

To the Point a Single Cloud, Acrylic on Canvas, 38 x 38 inches

To the Point, a Single Cloud, 2000

Acrylic On Canvas

38 x 38 inches

American Bathers, Acrylic on canvas, 43 1/2 x 56 1/2 inches

American Bathers, 2017

Acrylic On canvas

43 1/2 x 56 1/2 inches

Sunlight Still Life, Oil on canvas, 27 x 36 inches

Sunlight Still Life, 1956

Acrylic On Canvas

27 x 36 inches

The Terrace With Flag, Acrylic on canvas, 16 x 27 inches

The Terrace With Flag, 2002

Acrylic On Canvas

16 x 27  inches

Cloud Shadowed Fields, Acrylic on canvas, 20 x 26 inches

Cloud Shadowed Fields, 1973

Acrylic On Canvas

20 x 26 inches

Picnic With Dotted Bowl, Oil on canvas, 59 x 71 inches

Picnic With Dotted Bowl, 1960

Oil On Canvas

59 x 71 inches

From the Waterfront, Acrylic on paper, 22 x 28

From the Waterfront, 2012

Acrylic On Paper

22 x 28 inches

Silent Landscape, Oil on canvas, 19 x 26 inches

Silent Landscape, 1953

Acrylic On Canvas

19 x 23 inches

Coffee Break, Acrylic on Canvas, 71 x 62 inches

Coffee Break, 2006

Acrylic On Canvas

71 x 62 inches

Roland Petersen (born 1926) is a Bay Area painter whose paintings from the 1950s and ’60s are masterful syntheses of gestural abstract expressionism, painterly realism, and advanced color theory. Petersen has had an amazing career spanning seven decades as a painter and professor of art at UC Davis. While a member of the renowned UC Davis art faculty, 1956-1992, he was surrounded by such luminaries as Wayne Thiebaud, Manuel Neri, Robert Arneson and William Wiley. Petersen’s signature style of bright color, perspective, and still life began with his picnic series in the early 60’s.

Petersen’s work integrates still life, figures, and landscape into complex, architectonic compositions that are beautiful and enigmatic, but still retain a strong sense of place, in this case the fields and farms of California’s Central Valley. According to curator Bruce Guenther, Petersen’s paintings are “shatteringly still and exude an irrevocable solidity that is both timeless and yet locked in a specifically transitory milieu.”

In his early works, Petersen merges pure abstraction and formal analyses of color and space with figurative and landscape elements, a reflection of his interest in post-Impressionist geometry, specifically as practiced by Paul Cézanne and Georges Seurat. Petersen’s extraordinarily sophisticated palette, a striking and brilliant combination of light and dark hues that uses white “as an editing tool … to control the eye’s journey of discovery,” is informed not only by the color theories of Georges Seurat and Hans Hofmann but also by the emotional expressionism of Vincent Van Gogh, as well as the French symbolists.

Petersen is listed as one of the Bay Area Figurative School artists who flourished in the mid 20th century from the late 1940’s until the early 1970’s. These painters were noted for their departure from pure abstract expressionism to return to figuration. His works have been exhibited throughout the U.S. and can be found in museum collections including New York MOMA, The Whitney Museum of American Art, N.Y. , San Francisco MOMA among others.