October 30, 2009

Where do they stand when it is white and cold?

I am the person who always wonders about the details when I think of a lot of historic events or places. I want to know where the plumbing is in Versailles and if the residents had privacy for a moment alone? I also am the person who wonders- How cold were they? What kind of mittens, mufflers and boots did the artists who are plein aire painters in the winter wear?

Where was Monet, when in 1891, he painted "Haystack Winter, Giverny"? Was he standing in the field on a cold frozen earth? Or did he design a carriage or buggy with warm thermoses of soup and coffee? He did make a special boat upon which he painted his garden ponds.

I think it is possible Gustave Caillebotte was in his studio when in 1878 he painted "Vue de toits(Effet de Neige)", View of Rooftops(Snow Effect).

A man clearly after my own heart, interested in art and moderate comfort.

Lets fast forward to this century and one of my mentors, the Kansas artist, Robert Sudlow. Where is he in a car or a truck when he records these cold bleak winter days which surround Lawrence, Kansas?

Yesterday we experienced a slow purposeful drop of fluffy, white, gold. An October snow fell resolutely dropping 15 " in my back yard. I decided to paint it. Here is the back story. I set myself up with coffee, easel a comfortable chair and a golden retriever at my feet at the terrace window -looking out at sparkling wonder.

My painting friend, Aspen, enjoying the day.

October 14, 2009

Interior Twists and Turns

If you haven't seen the new Hamilton wing of the Denver Art Museum or the neighboring buildings be prepared for an adventure of angles and geometry.

Not only are there sculptures to engage the eye in the center of town but Michael Graves' designed Public Library with pyramid shaped towers. Across the street is the castle -crenalated Gio Ponti wing of the Art Museum and now the angled walls of the new Hamilton wing. These angled walls not only have presented new solutions for hanging art but are forcing builders to prepare the pitched roof for the upcoming freezing and thawing of the winter.

Inside the museum is in the process of mounting an exhibit which is to open officially in November. It is entitled "EMBRACE", and is a site specific installation. It has 17 artists who are designing special works for the space of the new wing. Four artists are from Colorado and the rest are international. What makes this even more unique are the possibilities of watching the various artists as they create their work. Katharina Gosse worked on a fork lift while she spray painted up 4 story angled walls.

John McEnroe made resin and nylon sculpture which hang down from the angled walls and lino cuts make arching lines across walls. I went to see a large metal tapestry being readied for hanging. This tapestry is made from metal foil wrapping found on beer bottles by African artist El Anatsui. He sent this very large piece all folded neatly in a 2'x3' cardboard box. He leaves it up to the participating museum to hang and manipulate the tapestry to fit the space. I will go next week and show the finished result- this is the back of the piece-what will the front look like?

October 3, 2009

Over the Top

Last weekend my husband and I went flying over the Rockies from Denver to Monte Vista. We flew in a plane piloted by a friend and got to look at turning golden Aspen leaves from far above. I am always astounded by the color schemes of nature. We looked down at mustard gold, deep forest green, inky navy blues and burst out into the sandy golden desert of the San Luis valley marked by irrigation rondelles.
Always when I am high above the world looking at the clouds I think of Georgia O'Keefes interpretation of clouds which she saw while traveling during the 60's. This is "Sky Above Clouds IV" by Georgia O'Keefe and I believe it can be seen at the Chicago Art Institute.

Another cloud image which makes me smile is painted in pastel by my longtime friend, artist, Eugenie Torgerson. entitled "One Perfect Day". Checkout: blog.eugenietorgerson.com.
Leonardo Da Vinci said that clouds were " bodies without surface"
If clouds are bodies without surface then mountains are bodies filled with surface.
I also discovered for cloud lovers this site which you can explore for poetry, visuals et al. http://www.cloudappreciationsociety.org


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