Robert Baras

Selected Paintings | 1980 – 2010

Robert Baras is an American abstract painter who was active from 1980 to 2010, shortly before his death from Alzheimer’s.

Based in New York for the better part of his life, Baras later began to embrace Southern France as a second home, ultimately splitting his studio practice between New York, Connecticut, and Tourettes sur Loup.

Relentlessly curious, Baras was known throughout his career as a shapeshifter, easily gliding between abstraction and figuration, and from heraldic personal emblem to mythic universal symbol; all the while developing and refining his formal vocabulary to accommodate new symbolic totems.

Born in New York City in 1930 to immigrant parents from Romania, Baras was raised in the Bronx, where he attended DeWitt Clinton High School and City College.

Soon after graduation, Baras joined the family business, Inwood Knitting Mills, a textile company where his brilliance as a colorist and his innate feeling for texture and design, immediately began to shine through. Under his successful stewardship, the family eventually sold the company, in 1974, and Baras embarked on painting full time, enrolling in the School of Visual Arts in 1979, where he received a BFA with honors.

He began his career long after the tail end of New York School dominance, in an atmosphere and milieu in which Neo-Expressionist painting, on one hand, was then on the rise, and post-minimalism and other conceptual strategies were beginning to firmly take hold.