Rise Delmar Ochsner is a prolific artists known for her "expressionistic" portraits of well-known chefs and dignitaries, as well as landscapes and figurative works. She has a bold and colorful style, and she seeks to engage the observer by doing "just enough work on a painting so that you have to bring some of yourself to the canvas."
Although she practiced medicine after obtaining her license from Tulane's Medical School, Ochsner always felt the pull to be a painter. When she combined her two passions by painting a portrait of one of her patients, New Orleans Chef Paul Prudhomme, she found herself embarking on a new stage of her painting career. After putting a print of Prudhomme's portrait on her business cards, she was encouraged to continue painting chefs, first by a chef in New York. She then took a six month sabbatical to paint twenty-six of New Orleans's chefs. After moving to California in order to pursue her painting career, she was commissioned by her friend Margaret Mondavi to paint the portraits of the recipients of the Robert Mondavi Culinary Award of Excellence, given by the Mondavi Winery.
In total, she has painted close to 100 chefs, and the portraits can be found all across the country, in restaurants, homes, and museums.
Exhibit at the Southern Food and Beverage MuseumEdit
A collection of the portraits of the Robert Mondavi Culinary Award of Excellence is now on display at the Southern Food and Beverage Museum in New Orleans. All of the portraits are of chefs who made a significant contribution to the culinary scene of New Orleans, including Emeril Lagasse, Andrea Apuzzo, Leah Chase, and Susan Spicer. In total there are 17 paintings on display.
The exhibit opened on November 14, 2009, and will be on display until February 15, 2010.