Don Keene is a product of Pasadena's Art Center College of Design and the graduate program in Studio Art at The College of New Rochelle. Having maintained a residence and studio in Westchester County, New York, for many years, he relocated to Connecticut in 2001. He has become known in the area for his artistic expertise with the human figure both in his own work and in his teaching. Having solo shows in the Keyes Gallery at WWML and the Piermont Flywheel Gallery, as well as participating in group shows at the Westchester Arts Council, the Katonah Museum of Art and Kenise Barnes Fine Art, he has also exhibited in the Walter Wickiser Gallery, Lichtundfire Gallery and Synchronicity Space in New York City. His concerns with the human figure are less illustrative than they are metaphoric. His abstract accumulations of paint and form investigate the relationships we have with our bodies. This investigative dialog he orchestrates deals with how and why human experience is confounded by primordial passion and desire within a free society that confuses sensuality, sexual charged imagery, emotive content, feelings of personal tension and self-consciousness, and the role of eroticism and pornography. It is the incongruous nature of this content that, for Keene, is in need of exploration. The resultant paintings and drawings on canvas and paper are purportedly abstract yet feel sexual.
- William C. Maxwell
Don Keene's paintings are bold Expressionistic renditions of a ‘Red Light’ district that lurks in the subconscious. Evading time, place and definition, these vignettes represent a freedom of will from judgment while the colors and lines that portray unabashed passions saturate the composition with frenzied force.
- D. Dominick Lombardi