Paul B. Rucker
has been making art from personal visions of the spirit world from a very early age, seeking in visual language to render metaphors, and ecstasies. Theatre, myth and ritual influence this search.
He paints in acrylic and other water-based media, as well as pen, pencil, and mixed media assemblages, combining various materials with hand-painted bones. Rucker also performs face and body painting on subjects photographed in selected environments; the resulting images are further elaborated with digital painting techniques. In addition, he has created theatrical backdrops, murals, collage, sign painting, mask-making in clay and paper-mache, silk painting and costuming.
His approach foregrounds the ennobled body– usually but not always, that of the human being– as a vehicle for archetypal revelation; the body in an extended connection with sacred Nature. His worldview is that of a modern Pagan: “making art is how I think in ‘Pagan’.”
His work has been exhibited in the Twin Cities, Tuscaloosa, AL, New Orleans, San Francisco, and Chicago; and has been seen online and in print through many venues in the USA, Canada, Australia, and Europe.
Rucker has curated and founded several Pagan-oriented arts events in the Twin Cities area, ranging from the Crossroads Festival in the 1990s to the Third Offering Gallery at the annual Paganicon convention in St. Louis Park. He is a core member of the Minneapolis Collective of Pagan Artists (MCPA), founded in 2014.
“From early on I shared my visions by making pictures–
–-that act of magic still sustains me
as I journey, explore and learn…
…how can paint evoke energy, or the non-material?”
“Paul B. Rucker combines myths, visions, and dreams with images from the natural world to produce paintings that nearly leap off the canvas with movement and energy,… Figures are outlined in light, suggesting their auras, leaves sprout from their heads and bodies, and flames leap from their brows… Viewers seeing Rucker’s work for the first and subsequent times are frequently struck by the feeling that here are scenes and figures that have always existed in their dreams and memories but that they never saw clearly before. The suggestive depths of his images remain fresh with familiarity and continue to evoke reveries and fleeting visions.”(James A. Runnels, collector)