"Doug Kacena's confident style of contemporary abstract expressionism recounts a lifetime's passion told in dynamic contrast of potent impasto, thin washes and pure fearlessness."
- American Art Collector Magazine, July 2016
"Doug Kacena Is Ready to Take Art in New Directions"
- Westword, May 2020
Doug Kacena, "Continuous and Endless ", Oil on Canvas, (Tryptic) 60 x 144", Private Collection
Recognizable patterns and everyday subtleties are the cornerstones of Doug Kacena’s artwork. The friction between those two things is expressed in a light-hearted but highly calculated way. Doug looks for familiarities that represent the core of his ideas — obvious tropes, generalizations — and then through the process of deconstruction and redaction, changes their tone. With a minimalistic approach, Doug is capable of portraying complex thoughts in a single brushstroke. But, his resulting paintings show a frenetic mood, where gestures and movement are an integral part of the process.
Doug received his undergraduate education in Fine Art (Painting) and Art History (Modern & Contemporary American Art) from the University of Colorado in Boulder. He has exhibited in galleries throughout the region including Gallery 13, Fresh Art Gallery, The Colorado Governor's Mansion, Abend Gallery, Core New Art Space, Valkarie Gallery, Sandy Carson, ArtWork Network, FtMoCA, Lone Tree Arts Center, Mike Wright Gallery and K Contemporary. Kacena has been featured in a myriad publications including: Art Ltd Magazine, Westword, Fine Art Connoisseur Magazine, 5280 Magazine, 1/1 Magazine, The Denver Post, 303 Magazine, Southwest Art Magazine and American Art Collector.
His conceptual exhibition "Crossover" is the subject of a PBS Special in conjunction with Colorado Public Television (CPT12) and Schler Productions and was nominated for a regional Emmy in 2017. His work can also be found in Macy's Harold Square New York, and the InterContinental Hotel, Minneapolis/St Paul Airport.
Doug Kacena, Studio View (2020) of works in process, 96 x 60" each
Redaction started informing Doug’s work in 2015-16, when he procured landscape photography and painted broad, emotive strokes over the photographs. This idea of exposing certain aspects of a scene and hiding others intrigued him and continued to influence his style for years after. In these artworks, Doug was expressing the feelings of loss and curiosity, speaking directly about the Colorado landscapes he grew up in and the influx of people moving to the state to immerse themselves in those bucolic scenes. The redactions also gave Doug a way to convey the sense of leaving something behind, or having something obscured from view and were a precursor to his 'Crossover' Exhibition.
(top to bottom), Doug Kacena, Redacted Landscape VIII, IV, V
Acrylic and Arrival Pigment on Paper, 21 x 44",
Collection of the InterContinental, MN and Private Collections
"Kacena has taken great liberties with his brush, identifying key lines, shapes and blocks of color within his not-so-raw material and reinterpreting them with an emotional freedom."
-Denver Post November 2016
"Doug Kacena of Mike Wright Gallery is one of Denver’s most gifted abstract artists....whose powerful oils are prized by galleries and collectors across the Front Range."
-Denver Post, YourHub, January 2016
This is a small sampling of earlier styles of Doug’s work. In these pieces, Doug used an image for reference, gravitating toward mountain scenery and cityscapes. Although those scenes — and the feelings they evoked — spoke to him, he found a resistance to painting direct representations of them and instead worked to reconfigure them in his own style. During this period, Doug discovered that painting a right angle often makes viewers assume that whatever is painted is a manmade object, which led him to other revelations regarding the relationship between man and nature. That path of thought still continues in Doug’s work today, although he has moved away from representational paintings sourced from a reference image.