The Art of Paint Making

February 16, 2007

Pigment

While searching for some red paint to make a Valentine’s Day card, I stumbled across Guerra Paint & Pigment located on East 13th Street in New York City. Art Guerra, the founder and paint-master himself, greeted me at the door. When I told him what I was looking for, he immediately offered up the cup of red paint he was coincidentally mixing and told me that it wouldn’t dry for another 30 minutes. Unfortunately, I couldn’t accept his offer because I was too fascinated to leave the store.

Guerra Paint & Pigment doesn’t sell paint exactly; they sell pigments and binders. You make the paint. Guerra pioneered this method after becoming frustrated with the poor quality and inconsistency of commercial paint available for artists while he worked as a mural painter in New York City. He opened Guerra Paint & Pigment in 1984 to allow artists more control over the properties of their paint.

For more on Guerra, check out this excellent article from Cabinet Magazine. And if you’re ever in the area, I highly recommend stopping by the store. From what I hear, there’s nothing quite like it.

Brendan

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