The Son of Man, 1946 by Rene Magritte

Magritte painted The Son of Man as a self-portrait. The painting consists of a man in an overcoat and a bowler hat standing in front of a short wall, beyond which is the sea and a cloudy sky. The man’s face is largely obscured by a hovering green apple. However, the man’s eyes can be seen peeking over the edge of the apple. Another subtle feature is that the man’s left arm appears to bend backwards at the elbow.

About the painting, Magritte said:”At least it hides the face partly. Well, so you have the apparent face, the apple, hiding the visible but hidden, the face of the person. It’s something that happens constantly. Everything we see hides another thing, we always want to see what is hidden by what we see. There is an interest in that which is hidden and which the visible does not show us. This interest can take the form of a quite intense feeling, a sort of conflict, one might say, between the visible that is hidden and the visible that is present.”

The Son of Man resembles The Great War on Facades (La Grande Guerre Facades), another Magritte painting featuring similar imagery. Both feature a person standing in front of a wall overlooking the sea. The Great War on Facades, however, features a woman holding an umbrella, her face covered by a flower. There is also Man in the Bowler Hat, a similar painting where the man’s face is obscured by a bird rather than an apple.

Source: The Son of Man, 1946 by Rene Magritte

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedinrssyoutubeby feather

The Drive To Create Pictures ‘Is Deep Within Us’

The nearly 80-year-old artist has written a book called A History of Pictures. It’s chock-full of art he’s loved looking at, including one painter he credits with inventing Hollywood lighting.


Picking Favorites

Hockney’s A History of Pictures is chock-full of images — a few photos, but mostly reproductions of paintings he’s loved looking at over the years. His favorite is a quick pen and ink drawing Rembrandt made in 1656.  It shows a mother, a father and a sister teaching a little child to walk. The jot of a curve makes a shoulder; a flick of the brush shows the father squatting, encouraging the child. Hockney thinks it’s a virtuoso piece.

“You see the tenderness of the drawing, I think. But you also see … the marks that made the drawing as well,” he says. “I mean, you can look at the mother and see the little ragged dress she has on, but then you see the marks that were made to do this and how few there are.”

The drawing is minimal and universal. “Any person anywhere in the world has seen something like this and experienced it,” Hockney says.

Source: Artist David Hockney Says The Drive To Create Pictures ‘Is Deep Within Us’

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedinrssyoutubeby feather

Norman Lewis Exhibit puts him into the context of an art movement

A few decades ago, the history of abstract expressionism seemed well established and its main exponents, including heavy-hitters like Willem de Kooning, Jackson Pollock, Robert Motherwell and Mark Rothko, all firmly identified.

But a recent series of exhibitions is questioning the accepted narrative of that transformational mid-20th-century art movement and arguing for the recognition of key participants who curators believe have been wrongly undervalued. Among them are “Women of Abstract Expressionism” at the Denver Art Museum and “Procession: The Art of Norman Lewis.”

The show was overseen by Ruth Fine, who served in 1980-2002 as the curator of modern prints and drawings at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. She became a Lewis admirer after encountering his works on paper, which she called some of the most original of his time. “I just think his work is very important, very beautiful and very special and not well enough known,” she said.

Never completely abandoning the figurative imagery that characterized his early work, Lewis (1909-1979) always pursued multiple directions in his emotionally involving abstraction. Some compositions were more monochromatic and atmospheric, and others consisted of kind of linear constructions such as “Roller Coaster” (1946).

Source: Exhibit puts Norman Lewis into the context of an art movement

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedinrssyoutubeby feather

Artist Edith McLean is still painting at 94

A victim of age-related macular degeneration, an eye disease that causes vision loss, 94-year-old McLean thought she’d never be able to paint again. Unable to paint fine lines and intricate details anymore, her work has strayed into the abstract, but that may have been for the best, McLean said.

“In spite of the fact this eye business is so awful, it really has improved my painting,” McLean said. “I guess it just goes to show that good does come out of the bad. I thought I wouldn’t be able to paint anymore but I can and it’s just great.“

McLean, a Rowayton resident for nearly 40 years, was recently featured in a show at St. Paul’s on The Green in Norwalk. The exhibit featured roughly 15 of her paintings as well as the work of another artist. McLean is also a member of the Rowayton Arts Center and has been a part of several area artists organizations through the years.

Born and raised in Brooklyn, McLean developed a lifelong love of drawing and painting. As the wife of an Air Force serviceman and a mother of one, she took classes when she could but didn’t started painting full time until after her husband died in 1984. That’s when she converted a back bedroom at her Rowayton home into the studio she still uses today.

“After my husband passed, I was by myself,” McLean said. “My son was married and I could go ahead and do what I want to do. I‘m just so glad I was able to turn it into something I love so much.“

Source: Norwalk artist Edith McLean is still painting at 94 – The Hour

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedinrssyoutubeby feather

New Orleans artist James Michalopoulos’ paintings to open at St. Tammany

Palette is not an alien word to New Orleans artist James Michalopoulos. His color palette contains exuberant hues that help bring his subjects to life; a palette knife is his preferred means for creating an abundance of texture in his often large-scale oil paintings.

“I favor the palette knife because it allows decisive and rapid action,” he said via email while working from his residence in France. “I like to go for the throat, so to speak. Brushes are great, if you wish to baste the beast, but better the knife when you wish to cut to the quick.”

Source: New Orleans artist James Michalopoulos’ paintings to open at St. Tammany show

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedinrssyoutubeby feather

What’s keeping great paintings from the public?

The work of art that rocked Shakespeare’s Globe theatre on Friday was not a painting – it was A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Yet it was created in precisely the same era as the paintings the market is apparently falling out of love with. Why is the visual art of the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries losing favour when drama from that age can still pack ’em in?

The New York Times asks if old master art can regain its “relevance.” Watching Shakespeare at the Globe offers a couple of answers. Make it new: productions of the Bard are popular because theatre is so good at revealing his contemporary pertinence. In fact, the Globe’s Dream goes as far as I’d ever want a theatre to do in that direction, including, ahem, changing some of Shakespeare’s words. This brings me to the second suggestion: make it democratic.

The reported crisis in the old master market is the inevitable result of the snobbery and elitism that has suffocated paintings for far too long. The very term “old master” is a horrible, destructive piece of pretension – what does it even mean? The custodians of oil paintings often seem to revel in the obscurity of their taste, putting on exhibitions that flaunt erudite connoisseurship and have little to say to the general public.

Source: Art for snobs: what’s keeping great paintings from the public? | Art and design | The Guardian

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedinrssyoutubeby feather

Four paintings disappear from Dunkirk museum

As art heists go, the one that recently struck the Dunkirk Historical Museum is not like to end up in the history books.

But it is rattling the employees of the small institution a half mile from the Lake Erie shore, who discovered in mid-August that four paintings by Dunkirk-born artist George William Eggers had been stolen from a museum storage room.

Staff discovered the missing paintings while preparing for an upcoming exhibition about Eggers, a painter and art museum director who lived from 1883 to 1958 and ranks as the most accomplished artist to emerge from the town. The artworks include a framed self-portrait in watercolor, which shows Eggers in a bright orange outfit reminiscent of a prison jumpsuit, and three other minor pieces.

Dunkirk Historical Society President Diane Andrasik stressed that the stolen works, valued at less than $1,000, were hardly valuable enough to merit the theft. What’s at stake, she said, is the reputation of the museum as a caretaker of important community treasures.

Read full article at source: Four paintings disappear from Dunkirk museum – Gusto

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedinrssyoutubeby feather

Banksy ended up accidentally reduced to rubble

Amid repairs last week to a home in the English town of Cheltenham, one of the most famous murals by the graffiti artist known as Banksy ended up accidentally reduced to rubble. The artist had painted “Spy Booth,” depicting spies holding up listening devices, on an exterior wall of the house, around an actual public telephone booth. This fiasco followed the discovery in July that Australian construction workers had inadvertently destroyed three Banksy stencils in Melbourne, bringing to five the number of the artist’s works that had vanished on one stretch of road.

Banksy’s street art, by its nature, is especially vulnerable to such losses, but his work isn’t alone in suffering such a fate. Many of the world’s most famous artworks require constant vigilance and upkeep. Michelangelo’s magnificent David in Florence, for example, is checked every two months or so for fractures.

Source: When Works of Art Come Apart – WSJ

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedinrssyoutubeby feather

Hypnotizing Translucent Waves Capture The Raw Power Of The Sea

Ivan Konstantinovich Aivazovsky loved painting the sea. A Crimean native, he was born in Feodosia, a port town, and thus had great waters as a constant companion. This 19th century Russian Armenian painter had real knack for depicting waves. Light and translucent, they perfectly capture the essence of the real thing. Many of these paintings featured a human element, too, with ships showing the struggle between man and nature.

During his career, Ivan Konstantinovich Aivazovsky painted more than 6000 paintings, half of which depict sea and ships. He often went to watch naval manoeuvres and even painted the siege of Sevastopol. Aivazovsky was widely recognized even outside the Russian Empire, receiving awards from France, Turkey and others.

Source: Hypnotizing Translucent Waves In 19th Century Russian Paintings Capture The Raw Power Of The Sea | Bored Panda

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedinrssyoutubeby feather

Tori Patterson’s art examines identity formation

Her work will be on display at the main campus gallery through Sept. 22. The gallery is located on the first floor of the Arts Building, 3536 Butte Campus Drive.

For the show, Patterson was inspired by identity formation, loss and rebirth—the path in which humans become who they are.

There are 21 paintings in a varied mix of her work interpreting the subdued, flourishing, or sometimes messy angles of the self at a given time.

Defining the self does not mean these are clear-cut portraits. Instead, they range from abstractions and landscape to figure studies.

The paintings are colorful yet subdued, with expressive strokes, colors and twisted lines that unhinge a realistic interpretation. These are a study on affect and identity, where introspection, dreaming and confronting a more difficult narrative are embraced.

Patterson is a painter who works and lives in the New York City



Facebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedinrssyoutubeby feather