/artists/howard fonda

Untitled, oil, pastel, and colored pencil on canvas, 48 x 36 inches, 2016. Image courtesy the artist.

Howard Fonda


Howard Fonda is an artist, former educator, father and husband living in Portland. Philosophical and introspective, Fonda’s work expresses a romantic worldview and mystical inner journey. The artist’s work has been exhibited throughout the United States and abroad.



The difference between representation and abstraction is like the difference between clouds and sky. The origin of the debate is more useful than the debate itself.

I see painting as a philosophical sanctuary and spiritual outpost.

I embrace painting’s traditions and limitations, finding comfort in them.

Painting is a vehicle of contradiction adept at conveying the hubris of, and understanding of, existence.

Painting is poetic and transcendent.

I find painting an articulate means of exposing a range of emotion, both rational and
irrational. Both rational, and irrational, experience define existence.

Genre and form are choices like any other, used to articulate a cultural perspective and historical context.

Craft, form and content are equivalents.

Painting relies on truth and beauty.

Mystery begs to be demystified. Definitions beg to be redefined.

Judgment, itself, can be good or bad. Both “good” and “bad” can be good or bad or both.

Judgment has less to do with art than one expects. Consideration and empathy are more useful.

Content is form. Form is content.

Academia, “institutions”, and “the market” are all equivalent.

In these times, critical analysis of art must contain a measure of academia, “institutions” and “the market”, as well as articulated taste.

The value of art is never fixed and is contingent on context.

Art is everything and nothing. Everything is everything and nothing. Nothing is everything and nothing.

Knowledge is not wisdom. Wisdom is more important than knowledge.

Creating meaning and finding meaning are two different things. I am primarily interested in finding meaning.

Reception: Wednesday, September 7: Artist Talk, 3:30-4:30 (tbc), reception 5-8pm

Venue: Hoffman Gallery at Oregon College of Art and Craft

Gallery Hours: Wed–Sun, 11–5pm

8245 SW Barnes Rd | Portland

Website: howardfonda.com

Residence: Portland, OR

Untitled, oil, pastel, and colored pencil on canvas, 48 x 36 inches, 2016. Image courtesy the artist.