Karl Friedrich Lessing

Karl Friedrich Lessing, 19th cehtury landscape
Karl Friedrich Lessing was a 19th century German painter who specialized in landscape and history painting.

In his landscapes, Lessing was influenced by the Romantic landscapes of Caspar David Friedrich, and Lessing himself became an influential teacher and painter, one of the primary figures in the Dusseldorf school of landscape painting.

Lessing reveled in the weathered textures of stone castles and keeps, rocky outcroppings and forbidding hills. I particularly enjoy the almost theatrical way he plays with light, highlighting particular areas of his compositions with strong contrasts in value.

Unfortunately, sources for his work are a bit scattered and thin, but I’ve gathered what I can below.

Eye Candy for Today: William Henry Hunt ink and watercolor interior

Interior of Bushey Church, William Henry Hunt
Interior of Bushey Church, William Henry Hunt

Pen and brown ink and watercolor, roughly 17×13 in. (42x33cm)

The link is to a zoomable version on Google Art Project; the original is in the National Gallery of Art, DC. The NGA has downloadable files, though you need a free account to access the largest one.

This piece by the 19th century English painter William Henry Hunt — known primarily for his watercolors of still life — is tremendously satisfying just as a drawing. The touches of watercolor carry it to somewhere between drawing and painting.

The Rembrandtesque pen lines, slightly wavering but solidly controlled, unerringly define the space, and the washes give it soliditiy and light. This is essentially done in two colors.

Look at how sure Hunt is of his values as he defines the vaulted ceiling, wooden structures, and multiple areas of relative darkness and illumination.

Alexandre Reider

Alexandre Reider, landscape Sao Paulo, Brazil
Brazilian painter Alxeandre Reider is based in São Paulo, where he was born where he studied at the Pan American School of Arts. He also added to his study of painting with several trips to Europe.

Reider’s landscapes are often given a dramatic feeling of depth by his use of atmospheric perspective, at times creating several distinct planes of value and color changes. His evocations of the Brazilian landscape range from sweeping vistas of mountains to intimate glens and wooded paths.

His muted, controlled greens are sometimes punctuated with higher chroma passages of spring blossoms.

Reider’s website has galleries of his finished landscapes, smaller works and studies. Though in Portuguese, the site is easy enough to navigate, Galeria de Obras is his gallery of work.

Reider teaches classes and workshops in São Paulo, and also highlights them on his blog.

There is an article on José Rosário’s blog, in Portuguese, that also features additional images of Reider’s work.

Kelly Carmody

Kelly Carmody, portraits and still life
Kelly Carmody is a painter based in Waltham, MA, who focuses on portraits and still life.

In her still life, Carmody works in a painterly, immediate approach, and has an interestingly different common theme of dead birds along with the more expected florals, food and vessels. Not a completely unusual theme for artists, particularly going back to Baroque still life that features game birds, but Carmody’s approach is different enough to make you take notice.

In her portraits, she appears to work with more refined brushwork. Her subjects — captured either as bust or full length portraits — have an interesting variety of personality types, though in several, particularly those of young girls, Carmody has brought out their defiant side, as though confronting both the painter and the viewer with an attitude of “I’m who I am, whether you like it or not.”

A number of her portraits (for example, those in ovals, above) are done at small size of roughly 5×7. Carmody calls these “Portraits in Little” and has a separate website devoted to them.

Carmody conducts regular classes in her Waltham studio, as well as occasionally conducting workshops.

Kelly Carmody’s work is currently on display in a solo show at the Sloane Merrill Gallery in Boston titled Kelly Carmody: Evocations that runs until December 9, 2015.

[Via Leo Mancini-Hresko]

Eye Candy for Today: Alma-Tadema’s Vintage Festival

The Vintage Festival, Lawrence Alma-Tadema
The Vintage Festival, Lawrence Alma-Tadema

Link is to zoomable version on Google Art Project; downloadable file on Wikimedia Commons; original is in the National Gallery of Victoria.

This is another of Alma-Tadema’s stunning evocations of life in classical Italy, in this case, a festival in Pompeii prior to the eruption of Vesuvius. The enlarged versions show Alma-Tadema’s technique, more textural and painterly than one might assume.

ALma-Tadema painted two versions of the painting at the same time, a larger one, now in the Kunsthalle Hamburg (image on Wikimedia Commons) was placed on display; and this one was used by engraver Auguste-Thomas-Marie Blanchard to create a popular engraving.

Eileen Goodman

Eileen Goodman, watercolors
Eileen Goodman is painter well known over her long career here in Philadelphia for her naturalistic watercolors of fruit, flowers and gardens.

Whet’s not obvious in images of her work is that she often works at a somewhat larger scale than is usually associated with watercolors, sometimes 4×3 ft (122x92cm) or larger.

Goodman explores the subtle cast of light on her subjects, often keeping her colors subdued in favor of studying delicate value changes.

I can’t find a dedicated website for her work, but she is represented by the Gross McCleaf Gallery.

There is a nicely done short video by John Thornton about Godman’s work and inspiration, with close-ups of her paintings, on YouTube.

Eileen Goodman’s watercolors are currently on display in a show at the Woodmere Art Museum in Chestnut Hill: “The Weight of Watercolor: The Art of Eileen Goodman“, that runs until March 14, 2016.