Born: Pawtucket, Rhode Island, 1950 Served in Vietnam, U.S. Navy 2d Division, USS Annapolis Tonkin Gulf, 1967-68
From the Artist:
From an article by Lois Nesbitt in Art Forum Magazine, April 1986:
Bill Reis' paintings are variations using a limited number of elements. They have the deliberate character of formal studies. Reis combines groups of rectilinear canvases with carved wooden elements that often serve as partial borders or frames. The typically monochromatic surfaces are painted deep shades of purple, black, turquoise, green, and rust, with the hues mutating into one another. Reis concentrates as much on texture as on color, from the dry-brush layerings of paint to the waxy, scratched surfaces. His techniques at times result in striking transformations of media.
Reis' strength lies in his skills as a colorist and composer, in his savvy balancing and measuring of simple elements and fields of color that in less skilled hands could appear simplistic. His disciplined approach is refreshingly rigorous. Reis never quite transcends his self-imposed constraint, letting studied variation yield to surprise. One wishes that he would relinquish a bit of his solemnity, that he would more often open the door of his studio onto a pink-speckled sky.