Itzchak Tarkay 1935 - 2012
In addition to being an acrylic painter and watercolorist, Tarkay was a master graphic artist and his rich tapestry of form and color was achieved primarily through the use of the serigraph. In his serigraphs, many colors are laid over one another and used to create texture and transparency.
When asked about his technique, Tarkay said it’s impossible to describe. “Can you explain your own handwriting?” he asked. He used his instinct to choose his colors and couldn’t define any other reason. “The color is coming,” he said. “When it’s finished, sometimes I’ll change the colors. It’s not something I think about.”
Most of his choices were instinctive – inspired by his surroundings, the music he listened to, the places where he traveled and nature. Very often, Tarkay painted “en plein air” and brought his sketchbook outdoors. As it grew dark, he would take a series of photos and finish the work in his studio. Tarkay said that the most difficult part of his painting is realizing when a work is complete. He recalled going to a show once after he had not seen his paintings in about three months, having the urge to re-touch each piece. To him, the works were never done.
In the later years of his life, Tarkay shared his gifts by mentoring younger Israeli artists including, David Najar, Yuval Wolfson and Mark Kanovich who often visited his studio, worked alongside him and received his critiques. Tarkay was also the only artist to collaborate with Israeli master, Yaacov Agam (1928). He and Agam created two paintings which incorporated both artists’ imagery in a single painting.
Tarkay spent between five and six hours each day in the studio, six days a week. While he had very little free time, he enjoyed going to concerts, reading books and listening to music, and visiting friends. Tarkay enjoyed meeting his collectors and working with the other artists.
Untitled Seated Woman -
Indigo Chapeau - Mixed Medium 2002
Two Ladies at the Cafe -Watercolor
Painters Model - Oil on Board
Moment of Peace - Acrylic on Canvas 2005
Country Luncheon - 2005
Three Ladies at Tea - Serigraph 1998