Ivan Pokhitonov

Ivan Pavlovich Pokhitonov, Ukrainian landscape painter
Ivan Pavlovich Pokhitonov, Russian landscape painter

Active in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, Ivan Pavlovitch Pokhitonov was a Russian/Ukrainian painter who spent the greater part of his career living and working in France and Belgium.

Though he also painted portraits and still life, he is noted for his landscapes. Influenced by the French and Belgian painters around him, Pokhitonov’s landscapes took on qualities that had critics referring to him as the “Russian Barbizon painter”.

Aside from some classes in drawing and watercolor during studies of other subjects at Odessa University, and a stint working for French Symbolist painter Eugène Carriè, Pokhitonov was largely self-taught.

Most remarkable, perhaps, after seeing reproductions of Pokhitonov’s paintings, is the realization that they are essentially miniatures. Rather than being 30 x 40 inches or larger, as I might have assumed, it appears that most of them are in the range of 6 x 10 inches (15 x 25 cm).

Pokhitonov worked on his small paintings with unorthodox tools, reportedly using magnifiers, scalpels, fishbones and other objects to enable small marks and textural effects. A number of his works are “cinematic” in aspect ratio, and many feature prominent horizons that might threaten to divide the canvas in two vertically, but are always kept in check in the context of his artfully balanced compositions.

Many of his contemporaries were impressed with his naturalism and painting skill, some even referring to him as a “sorcerer” or “magician”.

Russian great Ilya Repin, after slogging disappointedly through the 1894 Paris Salon, remarked that his only pleasure after “all this torture and wandering through endless exhibition rooms was the opportunity to have a rest in front of the miniature gems of our I.P. Pokhitonov”.


Thomas Mostyn

Thomas Edwin Mostyn, 19th and 20th century paintings, idyllic gardens

Thomas Edwin Mostyn, 19th and 20th century paintings, idyllic gardens

Thomas Edwin Mostyn was a British painter active in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

Though he also painted portraits, figures and landscapes of specific locations, he is known primarily for his invented landscapes of idyllic gardens.

These were often painted with high chroma passages, broken color and short brush stokes in the Impressionist manner.


Brent Lynch

Brent Lynch, plein air and studio painting

Brent Lynch, plein air and studio painting

Brent Lynch is a Canadian artist who transitioned from a successful 20 year plus career in illustration to the full time pursuit of gallery art and plein air painting.

To my eye, Lynch’s paintings are often focused on the interplay of warm and cool colors — intense blues and greens in dynamic balance with deep, rich red-oranges.

Lynch also plays with balance in his strongly geometric compositions, frequently pushing the effective horizon well above or below the top or bottom third of the canvas.

I particularly enjoy his marvelous depictions of water and reflections.

There is an interview with Lynch on the website of the Ida Victoria gallery.


Eye Candy for Today: William Lathrop etching

An Evening Walk, William Langson Lathrop, etching and drypoint

An Evening Walk, William Langson Lathrop, etching and drypoint

An Evening Walk, William Langson Lathrop

Etching and drypoint, roughly 18 x 15 inches (45 x37 cm), in the collection of the National Gallery of Art, DC, which has both zoomable and downloadable images. There is also a zoomable version on Google Art Project.

Lathrop was one of the group of painters active in the late 19th and early 20th centuries in and around New Hope, Pennsylvania, who are often collectively known as the Pennsylvania Impressionists.

Lathrop was also a printmaker, and here uses both etching and drypoint to capture the mood of a quiet evening amid trees.

I particularly admire the way he has used multi-directional hatching to both create the dark values and suggest the textural bark of the trees without actually trying to draw a bark pattern.


Jean-Pierre Gibrat

Jean-Pierre Gibrat, French comics artist, Flight of the Raven, bandes dessinées

Jean-Pierre Gibrat, French comics artist, Flight of the Raven and others, bandes dessinées

Jean-Pierre Gibrat is a French comics artist and writer noted for his graphic historical novels set during wartimes in France.

He gained the attention of American readers of European comics with the translated version of his 2002-2005 graphic novel, Flight of the Raven, set in Paris during the WWII occupation.

The book is beautiful, filled with lush evocations of Paris. Gibrat studied various locations in pen and watercolor before translating them into story backgrounds in his comics drawing style, which is also done in pen and watercolor. Gibrat is also noted for his appealing depictions of female characters, and his attention to the visual details of everyday life.

Flight of the Raven was preceded by a related story (but not a direct prequel) set in the same time period, The Reprieve, and was followed with a three volume story, Mattéo. — also set against the backdrop of war, but further back in time, in this case WWI.

You can find a number of his books on Amazon, some translated into English, some in French and other language editions.

The Reprive and Flight of the Raven were published in multiple volumes in France (three and two volumes, respectively) but were combined into single titles in the English language versions. The three French volumes for Mattéo are apparently being translated individually; only one has been released so far, the second English language volume is due in November of 2019.

Though he is both the artist and writer for his current work, Gibrat’s history of comics art goes back further, through collaborations with Jackie Berroyer and other writers, and work in the French comics magazine Pilote.

As far as I can determine, Gibrat does not have an official website, so I’ll point you to what resources I can find. You can also just try a Google images search for “Jean-Pierre Gibrat“.

[Note: Some of Gibrat’s work is erotic in nature, particularly a graphic novel titled Pinocchia, and a search may turn up images that are NSFW.]


Heinrich Berann’s panoramic map paintings

Heinrich Berann's panoramic map paintings of US national parks

Heinrich Berann's panoramic map paintings of US national parks

Heinrich Caesar Berann was a painter and cartographer from the mountainous region of Tyrol, Austria.

In the latter part of the 20th century, he was commissioned by the U.S. National Park Service to create panoramic map paintings of several of our national parks. These are available online as fairly large images on Wikimedia Commons, at resolutions of roughly 3500 x 5000 pixels (about 8 to 10 MB file size).

I’ve posted an image and two detail crops of his painting of Yellowstone above. The bottom one is about maximum resolution of the image on Wikimedia.

The National Park Service has published super high resolution images of four of the paintings at more than twice that resolution and considerably bigger file size (roughly 100 MB).

Berann also did imaginative figurative paintings and more down to earth location drawings, which you can find on a website maintained by one of his grandsons.The site includes a list of all of Breann’s panoramas of locations in various countries on several continents.

(I previously featured a contemporary artist, James Niehues, who applies a similar approach to images of ski and golf resorts.)

[Via Boing Boing]