Stan Masters’ America – Watercolors in the Great American Tradition

The Arts, October 1978

A Stan Masters watercolor is realism at its best, for he gives the impression of technical precision, rather than the actual thing. His brushstroke is loose but sure, with no prettiness or technical flamboyance. His perception is unmatched, and he has the ability to make us see his way, too. What he sees is so direct and the way he sees it is so logical that his intent and his achievement are timeless and universal. We find in his paintings unsuspected technical brilliance, always purposely hidden so as not to intrude on the overall effect he wants to create. One thing that is always fascinating in a Masters scene is the very real feeling you get of what is going on outside of the picture. In his scenes of empty streets in evening light there is always a feeling of deep melancholy with a vague sense of loneliness; but with a beauty that is so modest and direct, that they become intimately sensual to the viewer.

After a period of formal art study in Philadelphia, Stan Master returned to his native St. Louis to pursue a career in art that has spanned 30 years. His experience includes freelancing, art studios and ad-agency art director.

Turning to painting in 1971 and devoting himself primarily to watercolor, he has exhibited in such juried competitions as the prestigious “Watercolor USA,” winning a purchase award in 1971 and accepted again in 1975. He was a finalist in both the “Grand Galleria” exhibit in Seattle and the “Benedictine” show in New York, The Franklin Mint awarded him a $1500 prize in their Bicentennial art competition. He has won awards at the St. Louis Artists Guild and at the “Artistic Perception” juried competition.

In 1962 Stan’s film The Storm was awarded the Gold Medal for the Best Film in the American Competition by the Photographic Society of America. For the first time in 33 years of this competition, one film had ever won five top awards. In 1963 the same film was awarded a first prize in the annual Cannes International Film Festival.