Monday, October 20, 2014

American Masters 2014 at the Salmagundi Club

James Gurney, Thomas Torak, Nancy Guzik, Eric Bowman, Robert Lemler, Charles Yoder, Thomas Kegler, Quang Ho, Burton Silverman, Sherrie McGraw, Kathryn Stats, Jeff Weaver

American Masters is a yearly exhibit organized by the Salmagundi Club in NYC. I’m remiss in not mentioning this year’s earlier as it ends on October 24, 2014.

For those who can’t see the exhibit in person, there is a nice selection of the work online. I’ve pulled out a sampling for the images here.

(Images above, links to my posts where available: James Gurney, Thomas Torak, Nancy Guzik, Eric Bowman, Robert Lemler, Charles Yoder, Thomas Kegler, Quang Ho, Burton Silverman, Sherrie McGraw, Kathryn Stats, Jeff Weaver)

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Eye Candy for Today: Rembrandt self-portrait at the age of 53

Rembrandt self-portrait from 1659 at the age of 53
Self-portrait, Rembrandt van Rijn

Rembrandt painted this remarkable self-portrait in 1659, after he had suffered form personal financial collapse.

Much can be read into his expression, but the painting itself is a triumph.

As he had done on other occasions, Rembrandt posed himself in the manner of a work by a previous master, in this case, Raphael’s Portrait of Baldassare Castiglione (also here), which had been on display at auction in Amsterdam some years earlier.

There is a very high resolution image of this painting on the Google Art Project. There is also a downloadable version on Wikimedia Commons, but be aware that the full-size image linked from that page is 80mb.

In an image of this level of detail, Rembrandt’s deft, textural paint handling is revealed to be astonishingly bold and modern; his mixture of colors in modeling the face, masterful; and his penetration into his own state of being, and perhaps that of humanity in general, compelling.

It’s interesting to compare this to Rembrandt’s self portrait as the Apostle Paul from a few years later, which is equally amazing.

The original is in the collection of the National Gallery of Art in DC, but is currently on loan to the National Gallery of Art, London as part of a landmark exhibition, “Rembrandt: The Late Works”.

Christiane Beauregard

Christiane Beauregard, vector illustrations
Canadian illustrator Christiane Beauregard apparently takes inspiration from early 20th century Modernist artists like Miro, Léger and Picasso, an possibly other movements like Surrealism and Art Nouveau, and playfully blends them with her own unique vision into a very contemporary vector art style.

Using fresh, bold color palettes, lots of eye catching curvilinear forms and nice touches of detail and patterns, she creates whimsical combinations of figures, places and design elements to present each illustration’s theme.

I particularly enjoy the way she seems to present multiple scenes within the elements of a given illustration, with shapes appearing as windows into other spaces.

In addition to her website, you can find a portfolio of her work on the site of her artists representatives, Lindgren & Smith.

There is a brief interview with Beauregard on Design Taxi.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Eye Candy for Today: Cortès Parisian street scene

La Republique, Edouard Leon Cortes
La Republique, Edouard-Léon Cortès

On Galerie Ary Jan.

In their similarity to each other, and those of Antoine Blanchard, Eugene Galien-Laloue and others, you could call these Belle Époque Parisian street scenes formulaic — but it’s a formula, that when well done, I don’t tire of.

Often set in the rain or overcast, with blue-gray skies making the contrasting complementary colors of orange and yellow lights in shop windows glow with extra warmth, they are calculated deliberately to be eye candy, but finely crafted eye candy.

I love the way Cortez and Galien-Laloue, in particular, often leave their sketch lines in the finished painting.

See my post on Edouard-Léon Cortès

Joseph Noel Paton

Joseph Noel Paton
Joseph Noel Paton was a Scottish painter associated with the Pre-Raphaelite movement. He became friends with Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood co-founder John Everett Millais while they were students at the Royal Academy. Though he declined an offer to formally join the Pre-Raphaelites, Paton’s early work, in particular, shows their influence.

Paton’s early literary, historical and religious subjects were in keeping with the literary nature of many Pre-Raphaelite works. He is best known for his monumental fairy subjects, most notably The Quarrel of Oberon and Titania (above, top, with detail) and several related paintings.

In his later work, Paton found success with religious subjects that eventually leaned toward the sentimental.

Friday, October 17, 2014