October 20, 2010

Felicitations to a Colorist!

Growing up drawing and looking at line was encouraged and important in my family life. I lived in the middle of the country surrounded by strong winds, extremes of temperature and closeted by familial love. Museums of great art were not in my landscape. Dreaming was encouraged, looking in books at pictures and actually creating ones own observations. The artist whose original art I saw was that of the Swedish artist Berger Sandzen. His painting and prints were hung in every local school of my home town. They were a part of the background through which I moved.
As you can see from this painting Sandzen was well identifed as a colorist. I absorbed these colors and didn't realize until much later how this work was to lay the groundwork for the love of color. When I was a college student I finally went to a major art musem the Nelson Museum in Kansas City. It was not until I went on an arty trip with fellow lovers of line and color to the Chicago Art Institute did I bump into a resounding colorist and fall hopelessly in amazement and admiration. We took the train up from KC to Chicago and went on a walking/awakening tour of the architecture of Chicago, we went to the print room of the Chicago Art Institue and looked closely at original drawings and prints. But it was not until I walked into an exhibit of Pierre Bonnard's work did I understand how much I valued emotional and expressive color.
"The Breakfast Room". (c.1930-31) Oil, 62 7/8 x 44 7/8 ". The Art Institute of Chicago, Clyde M. Carr Fund

Did you notice the  size, the color and yet the intimacy which draws you in to Bonnard's world?  Well this is the birthday month for Pierre Bonnard. I will during the course of this month bring you more opportunities to look at the beauty created by one of my favorite artists.

1 comment:

Eugenie Torgerson said...

I saw that show in Chicago and fell equally hard for Bonnard. I wanted to live in his world --- the food, the flowers, the windows, the warmth, the vividness. Looking back, it made sense: I came from the dim grays of Cleveland, lived in a suburb stringently modeled on strict New England towns, and grew up in a family where study was preferred over, say, sensuous food & other pleasures. My attachment to the stacked, Asian perspective predicted my subsequent love affair with Japanese prints.
What a nice triad, Carole -- you, Pierre, and me! Thank you for the reminder.


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