The Last Day of Pompeii by Karl Brullov.
From the State Russian Museum, St. Petersburg, on Google Art Project. Click in lower right of image for zoom controls.
Ilene Meyer was a painter who created stunning magic realist, fantastic and visionary works, often involving continued themes of checkered planes, geometric objects, animals, sea creatures, flowers, fruit and other aspects of the natural world, real and imagined, swirled into cascades of looping forms as if pulled by strands of liquified gravity.
Unfortunately news is going around the net today, in a way it apparently didn’t at the time, that Meyer died in 2009. There is a remembrance on the Spectrum Fantastic Art site by Cathy and Arnie Fenner, who were the editors of Meyer’s printed collection (if there is a “front door” link to this page from the Spectrum site, I can’t find it). There is also an obit on the Seattle Times.
Meyer was self taught and played with the influence of other artists and various genres in her paintings. She wore her fondness for the work of Spanish Surrealist Salvador Dalí on her sleeve, making playful homages to many of his themes, particularly from his later “Atomic” period. She became internationally recognized, and her work is exceptionally popular in Japan.
Unfotrunately, Meyer’s official site, Meyerworld, which is still a good place to go for information about the artist and an overview of her paintings, has never been updated with larger images or images of her later work. As often happens when that is the case, others have stepped in to fill the void and we must turn to other sources for larger and later images.
There are a number of Tumblr posts of her work, but for the larger images necessary to really do justice to the detail and visual richness of Meyer’s work, there is an unofficial gallery on the Russian fantasy art collection site, LoNeLy CrazZy, which has an extensive gallery of large images.
Another volume, World Below, was a children’s story about survival and change in an ancient civilization that has parallels in modern environmental issues, and is more difficult to find.
New York based artist Todd M. Casey is originally from Massachusetts, and credits his background with developing his attraction to still life subjects that have a feeling of history and suggest a narrative.
Casey worked for a time as a graphic designer in New York. While beginning studies in animation at the Academy of Art in San Francisco, discovered a love of painting that led him back to New York where he has studied with at the Water Street Atelier of Jacob Collins, as well as independently with Max Ginsburg, Camie Davis and Carlos Madrid.
On Casey’s website and blog you will find figures and portraits, both drawings and paintings, in various stages or finish, along with his beautifully composed still life subjects, as well as preliminary studies for many of them, though not always together as I’ve shown here. (I always find comparing studies to finished paintings fascinating.)
I particularly like the way he works with lighting and the play of shadows in his still life arrangements. There are also some landscape studies and sketches.
(The blog is one of those Blogspot arrangements that can be viewed in different ways. If you find the default Blogspot arrangement of “Magazine” as poorly thought out as I do, choose “Classic” in the green bar at the top of the page.)
You can also find a gallery of Casey’s work on Cavalier Galleries.
Franklin Booth was a great American Illustrator and one of art history’s masters of the medium of pen and ink.
Booth grew up on a farm in Indiana in the late 1800’s. Innocently misunderstanding the printing technology of the time, he developed his style by copying what he thought were pen and ink illustrations in popular magazines, but were in fact wood engravings.
The result was a unique style that no one else would have attempted, and one that Booth ran with and developed to dizzying heights.
Booth is not nearly as well known as his talent and accomplishments would warrant. When I wrote about him in 2007, there were two recently published collections of his work, one from Auad Publishing and the other from Flesk Publications that are now unfortunately out of print and commanding several times their cover price used.
There are, however, some resources on Booth that have become available since then.
Notably for images, there are a series of posts by indefatigable image poster and enigmatic friend to the internet, Mr. Door Tree on his wonderful (and inaccurately named) blog, The Golden Age Site. The link I’m giving is a general search for the artist’s name; be sure to follow the “Next Posts” links the bottom of the pages for more (and click on the images in the posts for the larger versions).
There is also a little trove of Booth’s astonishing illustrations for Estey Organs; some of these are available in higher resolution in the posts I mention above, but they are collected here in a surprising array of images not directly depicting pipe organs, but the concept of enjoying them.
In addition there is a selection of Booth images on The Pictorial Arts
In addition there is a new eBook, The Colors of Black Lines: Franklin Booth’s Life and Work by Thomas E. Rugh. It is available in several eBook formats. Though not a collection of Booth’s work, it is densely illustrated and is probably the most comprehensive source of information on the artist and his work yet undertaken. There is a free sample chapter available as a PDF.
When I wrote about the beautiful and quietly enigmatic room interiors of Nick Patten back in May of this year, I pointed out that I found it difficult to navigate his online portfolio.
I’m happy to day that Patten has redesigned his website, making it much easier to view the images of his work.
For more see my previous post on Nick Patten.
On Met Museum. Use Fullscreen link, then zoom or download arrow.
Compare to same subject by Hendrick van Vliet.
There is, shall we say, a bit less respect being shown to the imposing edifice in De Witte’s version (grin).