The Evolution of Metrov Portraiture

Born in Los Angeles and schooled in art at UCLA, Metrov began his career in New York City creating illustrations for major publishers such as MacMillan, McGraw-Hill, New York Magazine, and ultimately, world-renowned Push Pin Studios, the only graphic designers to ever exhibit in the Paris Louvre. He eventually segued into Fine Art painting after studying with celebrated Prix di Rome scholar, Gilbert Stone. Metrov began accepting commissions for portraits of celebrities and international socialites. He quickly became renowned for his uncanny ability to capture his subject’s deeper, “spiritual essence.” “It’s not something I try to do, it’s simply what comes naturally. Some have called it a kind of psychic ability,” says Metrov, now living and working in Santa Barbara, California, America’s  “Côte d’Azur.”

When Margaux Hemingway saw her finished portrait, she was so moved, she cried for an hour. Ben Vereen stood speechless before his likeness. Mick Jagger hired Metrov to paint his wife, Bianca. Metrov began competing with his neighbor, Andy Warhol, as portraitist of New York’s elite high society. Growing restless, however, with static artwork, Metrov became fascinated by the potential of motion pictures to be “paintings that moved and made sound.”


“Margaux” by Metrov (1977); Acrylic on Canvas; 18″ X 24″

(Below: Select portraits from New York City – 1970’s)

After spending many years in the motion picture business, Metrov once again began accepting portrait commissions in 2012. His style has evolved over time, but his art continues to reflect his subject’s inner nature as well as their common human struggle to balance the often chaotic energies around them. Metrov now integrates digital technologies with Classical Renaissance oil painting techniques.

Digital portrait of the artist’s wife, Dr. Maureen O’Brien (2014)

Digital portrait of the artist’s wife, Dr. Maureen O’Brien (2014)

(Below: Select digital portraits)

In 2015, Metrov was invited to conduct a public digital portrait session at the Santa Barbara Museum of Contemporary Art as part of Marinella Senatore’s highly acclaimed “Building Communities” exhibition. The event was an international success. (Select portraits from exhibit below.)

“The Great 21st Century Hollywood Portrait Project.” We have recently launched this exciting new project which will document myriad players in Entertainment, including actors, singers, directors, producers, studio executives, agents, Special FX Supervisors, and more. The works in this series, being assembled as an international museum exhibit, are all mixed-media on 72″ square panels. 

Portrait: Academy Award Winning Writer, Director, Producer, Robert Zemeckis; 2017; mixed media; 72″ X 72″

(Select works below)



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