Digital Press Kit
Mike Fantuz is a Canadian painter known for his palette knife paintings depicting the urban landscape in the American Realism style. Using inherited palette knives and thick application of paint, he investigates the aerial perspective informed by his extensive experience in the aviation industry as an air traffic controller and pilot. His passion for the urban landscape of Newfoundland and Labrador developed over the decade he spent living and working in the province. Fantuz's work has appeared in exhibitions in Canada, the USA and UK and is part of both private and public collections.
Michael Fantuz’ vision is fed by extensive travel and experience in aviation and exploration. His large-scale palette knife works invite the viewer above and into his aerial perspective on landscapes and cityscapes.
The paint is thickly applied, bold in colour, and based in Fantuz’ discipline to limit his tools to palette knives only. This forces an intuitive engagement with the colour and density of the materials over the minute precision that smaller brushes would afford. Both the knife stroke and viscosity determine an aesthetic that reflects movement and abstraction; the stroke is wider, with bold impasto edges. This invites attention to tone, hue, contrast, and a more open compositional focus, which Fantuz embraces. The subject is seen from a distance rather than in tight close-up. Bright contrasts evoke the dynamic light play across a broad perspective visible only from a distance.
Fantuz’ connection with his subjects and materials is personal and felt. He inherited his palette knives from his grandfather, whose own artistic practice spanned decades. The knives carry layers of artistic legacy. Fantuz also brings his close relationship with landscapes to the canvas. His exploration work across multiple locations, as well as his aviation work above them, inform a broad perspective on our larger surroundings.
Bringing this perspective to his studio work is a meditation on the power of art to connect the painter and viewer alike to something larger than ourselves. Fantuz strives to honour this power. Quiet hours spent creating in the studio have a settling effect from mundane distractions and obstacles, opening avenues to larger levels of experience. Fantuz seeks these avenues in his time at the easel, with confidence that an individual’s deeper experience is closer to our collective experience, and that the viewer can enter along with him into the scale, perspective, and vision of his works.
2014 Imagined Homelands, Solo, Christina Parker Gallery, St. John’s NL
2012 Between Tides, Solo, Christina Parker Gallery St. John’s NL
2010 The Resettlement of Grand Bruit, Solo, Christina Parker Gallery, St. John’s, NL
2005 The Loop, Solo Exhibition, Gander Arts and Culture
2021 Where Lights Meet, Ian Tan Gallery, Vancouver BC
2020 Summer Group Exhibition, Ian Tan Gallery, Vancouver BC
2017 Revisiting the Rural, group, Christina Parker Gallery, St. John’s NL
2010 Arts and Letters, The Rooms, St. John’s, NL Group Exhibit
2009 Arts and Letters, The Rooms, St. John’s, NL Group Exhibit
2009 Craft Council Annual Fair, St Johns Arts and Culture Centre, St. John’s, NL
2008 Craft Council Annual Fair, St Johns Convention Centre, St. John’s, NL
2006 Two Perspectives, Two Person Exhibition, Gander Arts and Culture, Gander, NL
Fortis Newfoundland and Labrador
Government of Newfoundland and Labrador
The Delta Hotel
Newman Sound Mens Choir
Central Health Foundation
Town Square Family Dental, Gander
Gander Massage Therapy
2010 Commission for album cover Newman Sound Men’s Choir
2009 Commission for design and presentation of logo art for the Gander Triathlon
2009 Newfoundland and Labrador Arts and Letters Award, senior division visual art “Delta to the Narrows”
2008 Newfoundland and Labrador Arts and Letters Award, senior division visual art “South Shore Fire, 1901”
2006 Adjudicators Choice, “All around the Circle”, Gander Arts and Culture
2005 Peoples Choice, “All around the Circle”, Gander Arts and Culture
2021, "It Takes Two: The Creative Life of Emilie and Mike Fantuz"
2019, Border Crossing Magazine, “The Oil Paintings of Michael Fantuz”
2014, Radio Canada International, Interview with Marc Montgomery
2013, Arabella Magazine, “Artist to Collect”, Kylie Serebrin
2012 Riddlefence issue 19 art contributor
2010 The Telegram, Visual Arts Top Ten, Joan Sullivan
2010 The Telegram November 2010, review for solo “Settled”, Joan Sullivan
2010 The Newfoundland Herald, “A Portrait of Resettlement”, Sarah Shepperd
2009 Interview with Gander Beacon, Arts and Letter Award
2005 Interview with CBC radio Michael Aucoin for “The Loop”
2005 Skywave’s Gander, television interview with Gina Brown for solo show “The Loop”
For all media, press and collaboration inquires, please contact