Paintings/Painters that you love.

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Paintings/Painters that you love.

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Redigeret: aug 5, 2007, 7:33 pm

In another topic some of us were talking about paintings that speak to us. What are some paintings that you love?

I've been enjoying the Simon Schama PBS series, which is now out on DVD. I liked the program so much that I ordered it and have been watching over and over the episodes on Rothko and Van Gogh.

What does it mean to "get" a painting? For it to enter into your consciousness and speak to you? Schama finds a way to enlighten us through drama. You really begin to feel that you know these artists.

The one on Van Gogh presents him as a sensitive, outcast, highly intelligent, spiritual man who thought of his paintings as representing what was in his heart. It shows you how he developed his style and suggests that he died just when he had mastered style and form.

Schama said that each brush stroke is like a personal letter to the viewer. If you've ever read Van Gogh's letters, you'll understand this.

I used to be passive about Van Gogh's sunflowers. But slowly I came to feel the power in these images. They are not paintings of flowers but of life. All life. Continuance. Mortality. His brush strokes make them alive. The sunflowers have all the strength and light of Apollo.

aug 5, 2007, 3:35 pm

I get a sense that Rene Magritte could be a soul brother of mine. There's something about his hilarious, surreal, otherworldly works that has always drawn me. If I could pick a cover artist for my first major release, Rene would be my guy.

Redigeret: aug 5, 2007, 7:52 pm

I love this topic.

I was looking through a book of Rubens at work the other day, and though I had been introduced to Rubens' paintings years ago, even in the color plates the works had such a vibrancy and freshness and kind of manic presence -- I was really surprised at how moved I was by all of them.

I also find Caravaggio's paintings terribly expressive and meaningful. Religious themes aside, the light and contrast and palette of his works are phenomenal.

Joan Miro, Max Ernst, as well. I'm listing painters instead of paintings aren't I?

Kiki Smith isn't strictly a painter, I know, she's a sculptor and printmaker, but her work spins my head (which is a good thing). I would hate to neglect mentioning her in a conversation about how art moves.

Redigeret: aug 5, 2007, 8:50 pm

Hello Rennikka, welcome to the group. I look forward to knowing more about your relationship to art. Cliff, you too. Surrealism is something I hope we can go into at greater length.

One of the things I'm frustrated with about myself is that I don't really know how to talk about art. I have a BA degree in art, but that was long ago, and I can't really talk about the art that moves me. I'm much better with literature because I write it and teach it.

Watching Schama has made me want to learn how to talk about art--for real. His intimate, poetic and dynamic style of writing and speaking have made me want to work harder to express myself. For instance, this is what he says about one of Rothko's paintings, indeed the room filled with Rothkos, in the Tate Gallery:

This is a place where we come to sit--on the kind of bench Rothko specified, naturally--in the low light, and sense the aeons rolling by; where we can feel beckoned towards those hanging veils with their mysterious interior glimmer, or through the portals that seem to suggest both a vision of infinity and its unattainability. One of the words Rothko used most often about his art--but it could be extended to all art-- is "poignant," for the best of it is suffused both with a sense of the inevitable passing of things, including us, and with art's determination to trap, consolingly, those fugitive visions. It's impossible, then, to come to this room and not be touched by that poignancy: of our comings and goings, entrances and exits, womb, tomb and everything in between.

Redigeret: aug 5, 2007, 9:00 pm

Theresa Williams in # 4 said,

"One of the words Rothko used most often about his art--but it could be extended to all art-- is "poignant," for the best of it is suffused both with a sense of the inevitable passing of things, including us, and with art's determination to trap, consolingly, those fugitive visions."

Okay, here is one of my favorite artworks. This particular piece is a poster, but somewhere in it's genesis it had to be painted. I know this isn't what others may think of as art, but by the above quote, for me, this image is filled with poignant passing.

When I look at this I see lost friends on the other side of the fabric of existence. This has been a theme of the tragedy of warfare since Odysseus visited Achilleus and Ajax in the underworld.

I like other, more conventional art, but this moves me in a special way.

aug 5, 2007, 9:02 pm

Gene, I couldn't agree more. That is a powerful work, and your allusions to mythology are apt.

aug 5, 2007, 9:03 pm

I don't really know how to talk about art, either. My relationship to it is in some ways tangential and currently takes a backseat to the career path, unfortunately. Art roots me, though. I started there (and got a master's in writing poetry along that line) but I'm drifting toward something else these days--I especially forget the vocabulary I once had for discussing art, and occasionally have words filled in for me by my subconscious literary criticism dictionary.

As to the Schama on Rothko -- wow. That is just such an apt description of not simply Rothko, but what feeling Rothko inspires in an audience, or audience member, being me, I guess. I know it's a reference to what's in the Tate Gallery, but it could also apply most readily to the Rothko Chapel in Houston. Being in that space gives that sense of "aeons rolling by."

Redigeret: aug 5, 2007, 9:36 pm

rennikka, I know, it seems our boats are always drifting away from art, or at least how to express its power in words. Words are my thing, but they fail me often when it comes to expressing the ineffable. Perhaps we need to find a more personal vocabulary for expressing ourselves. That would be poetry, I guess. I have a wonderful book of poems about art. I should share some of the poems here. I will some time.

I also think that Gene in message #5 has it right when he talks about a very personal connection to art and connects his feelings to the past through mythology

aug 7, 2007, 12:55 am

I, too, have always loved Caravaggio. Clarity emerging out of deep shadows appeals to me in writing, too. I am always having to restrain myself from over-using the word "shadow."

At the moment, as I write about Renaissance Antwerp, I am also appreciating Brueghel - so much roundness and substance to his figures.

aug 7, 2007, 6:58 am

The chaos and colour of Chaim Soutine; my favorite expressionist painter. I especially enjoy his portrait series of various Parisian hotel employees.

aug 7, 2007, 7:51 am

My favorite painter is probably J.M.W. Turner ... a very unique style that provides a lot of room for one's own imagination to work ... his "The Slave Ship" is just amazing ...

Redigeret: aug 7, 2007, 12:28 pm

In # 9 margad seyz,

"At the moment, as I write about Renaissance Antwerp, I am also appreciating Brueghel - so much roundness and substance to his figures."

This brought to mind today's crop of high fashion models. The only men that could possibly desire one of these women are men who really hate women.

Now, look at Rubens. There was a man who obviously loved women.

aug 7, 2007, 3:21 pm

Re Magritte and humor, i always thought "what a wonderfully interesting man, always hiding the face of his sujects . . ."

Renee was, what, 14, when he went to the beach with his mother and sat on the blanket as she walked out into the sea, placed a bag over her head

and just kept


I've often wondered, even if a parent had told me not to interfere, what i might have done at that age, in that circumstance. One of the oddities of living through art . . .

and yet, in the years to come, he certainly brought us humor. I think he was smirking at life more than we ever imagined.

Redigeret: aug 7, 2007, 3:29 pm

Tim, I didn't know that story about Magritte. One must wonder if/ how this affected his art.

Gene, Hurrah for Rubens! What you said about the fashion models rings true. It's kind of scary to me.

aug 15, 2007, 6:20 pm

I'm a fan of Emily Carr, I also like Jack Shadbolt .I thought I'd get some Canadian content in here!

aug 23, 2007, 7:25 pm

Sueño de una tarde dominical en la Alameda Central: A few years ago I had a big Diego Rivera phase. His politics are questionable, but I've never had a doubt about this painting. Wonderful.

aug 23, 2007, 7:32 pm

Art is not only from Europe and America.

aug 23, 2007, 7:40 pm

Denne meddelelse er blevet slettet af dens forfatter.

aug 23, 2007, 7:46 pm

i'm fascinated by the play of light, so i like almost anything by Hopper, Kandinsky, or Caravaggio.

Among contemporary artists, i love the photography of Jim Brandenburg, especially those in Chased By The Light.

aug 24, 2007, 1:33 pm

Kandinsky, definitely, because his paintings look like music.

German Expressionism in general.

And I've loved Peter Max since I was little, but I think it's more a family thing than a taste in art - I was brought up knowing that this, the Peter Max sheets Mom put on my bed, or the blanket, or the prints, was priceless, and was a part of my mom's childhood that she was sharing with me and not with my brothers.

aug 26, 2007, 4:16 am

When I was a teenager, I had a blouse made out of a Peter Max print fabric. I'd forgotten about it until I saw your post, but it was a favorite!

Redigeret: aug 27, 2007, 2:08 pm

The Art Institute of Chicago sponsors a volunteer program that teaches elementary classes to look at and experience great works of art. I am forever learning new things from the kids, and I am forever having my mind blown by the training they provide and the insights I gain.
One of my favorite kids observations about Van Gogh's self portrait - the squiggly lines are the tears he's crying on the inside.

I have learned to appreciate works I would have dismissed at first glance, and love when there are layers of meaning to a painting. Some of the artists have laid their souls bare for us to see once we learn their visual language. I love Van Gogh's desperation to explain what he saw and felt, and am mesmerized by his flowers and moth prints. My favorite coffee table art book is Van Gogh's Flowers. I can stare at O'Keeffe's flowers for hours.

aug 27, 2007, 3:20 pm

Regarding the Magritte story from Tim_Watkinson @ message 13 ... I believe that episode with his mother was the inspiration, if that's the right word, for his painting "The Lovers" ... another of my favorite paintings ... certainly worth taking a "Google" at (I can never remember how to post photos here, despite having it explained to me numerous times).

aug 28, 2007, 12:55 am

What a poignant and perceptive observation about Van Gogh's squiggly lines!

aug 28, 2007, 1:55 am

I love everything I've seen by John Constable and Monet.

Redigeret: okt 15, 2007, 12:04 pm

Hello. New to LT.
Off the top of my head, I like Man Ray, Duchamp, Shwitters, the collage works of Picasso; Robert Longo and Rauschenberg, yes, TheresaWilliams, Mark Rothko, American plastic artists. I admire Van Gogh's persistence (I hope that is the right word) and vigor of his works. Kandisnky and Calder for their unique vision. Durer for his seeming horror vacuii. Louise Nevelson and, yes, readaholic, O'Keefe for their guts. Miro and Kandinsky for their playfullness. :) I hope to be able to visit this group often.

okt 15, 2007, 4:24 pm

I love the impressionists. They helped me understand that my own artwork didn't have to look like a photograph to be beautiful. Some day I hope to visit Monet's garden with my oldest daughter. She renewed my interest in this artist when I read Linnea in Monet's Garden to her when she was 5.

Redigeret: okt 15, 2007, 6:41 pm

Picking a favourite artist - probably impossible and guided by my present mood.

At the moment - love Vermeer (his use of light and shadow), Brueghel, and the Impressionists.

apr 4, 2008, 1:38 pm

I'm joining all these discussions after they have already departed from the station, it seems, but here goes. I have a Bachelor's in Art, and teach Art History at a high school, but I too struggle with words when discussing art. Paul Tillich said the most intimate way to "know" any culture was through its art, and I agree, even if words cannot be conjured up to relay the message. My favorite painters would have to be Edward Hopper and Andrew Wyeth. My website will certainly reveal how much they influence my approach to watercolor. I love Hopper particularly because he was so erudite, reading French fluently and loving Proust in his own tongue. He also had great regard for Goethe, Robert Frost, William Carlos Williams and Sherwood Anderson, and above all--Ralph Waldo Emerson. I find too few artists who read voraciously (currently I can only think of Rothko and Motherwell), but I believe that literature is one of the finest avenues of inspiration for the visual artist.

apr 5, 2008, 3:10 pm

being a visual artist the list of painters/paintings that i love would be pretty long. not my favorite painter, but still a painter that i admire immensely is chuck close. this is an interview with charlie rose which i posted elsewhere on this site:

Redigeret: apr 8, 2008, 11:12 pm

I love Vermeer. It's amazing how many different ways there are to approach the painting of light. Vermeer handles it one way, and two of my other favorite painters, Caravaggio and Renoir, handle it in two completely different ways.

DMTripp, when I looked at the watercolor of the small town at the top right hand corner of your watercolors page, I first thought you must have painted a watercolor that my mother has cherished as long as I can remember. But you're not old enough.

apr 7, 2008, 1:18 am

"Margad," Thank you for looking at my website. I'm David. If you are talking about "Turvey's Corner," the town is made up. The building on the left is from a south central Texas town, the central building is in downtown St. Louis. And the building on the right is from a small Illinois town south of East St. Louis. I try to create environments that I recall as a child in the 1950's.

apr 8, 2008, 11:16 pm

"Turvey's Corner" is the one, David (I'm Margaret). I would never have guessed you had cobbled it together from so many different places! It's interesting, because my mother grew up in Illinois (Chicago, though) and my father in a south central Texas town (far too small for the building you borrowed). Perhaps that's why it feels so familiar to me.

apr 9, 2008, 10:30 am

Thank you again, Margaret, for looking. I have always hoped that I could portray "Anywhere, USA" in my watercolors. I acknowledge that nostalgia has created something that never really existed. What's going on in my work is that I'm painting images that I see today that spark a shock of recognition of having been there when I was quite young. I love the idea from Proust that primal memories are triggered by our five senses, and those memories are warm and inviting--they make us feel good when we enter into that space. I do feel those primal stirrings when I photograph, arrange, and finally set up a watercolor composition of some "space" that "takes me back." I've been stirred over this past year in reading Rothko's remarks about creating a space to enter. I hope I'm doing that for others besides myself. Thank you again for looking and responding.

apr 10, 2008, 5:39 pm

David, you say: I acknowledge that nostalgia has created something that never really existed. This is pretty much the same thing novelists do. We don't apologize for it, because we are, at the least, aiming for a truth deeper than the surface truth of the factual. Isn't that more-or-less what you're doing with "Turvey's Corner"? It seems to me that it evokes a feeling, a mood of nostalgia and loss that may be more intense for most people looking at your painting than if you had painted a location that had literally existed.

apr 11, 2008, 11:59 am

A profound "thank you," Margaret. You just knocked the wind out of me with a few carefully chiseled lines that present what I've tried to figure out and then to say to audiences for over a decade. Plato believed that Truth was the reality that propped up the world of appearance that we receive everyday through our senses. The creator combines logic with his/her sensual experience to create something that will hopefully point to that truth. That's what I love about the creative enterprise--writers with words, musicians with sounds, artists with visuals, etc.--all of us are responding to something very primal, and we put that creative response out for us, and others, to experience.

Now the reason you shook me was because I have, for over a decade, been absorbed with Edward Hopper and Andrew Wyeth, not just for their pictures that move me, but for their incredible theories that echo my deepest sentiments. The one thing that has plagued them (despite their incredible success and fame) has been the viewers that only look at the appearance of their paintings, and marvel at the details, the craftsmanship, the selection of colors, etc., and declare these men to be fine illustrators. So also, in all my years of painting, my "evil internal editor" tries to convince me that I'm just a talented illustrator. And of course at the art festivals, 49 out of 50 people will remark about my details, and then one, like you, finally notices and talks about what all of this really Is.

So for that, I thank you. You've made my decade. And I will always carry around with me your statement about what novelists do: ". . . we are, at the least, aiming for a truth deeper than the surface truth of the factual." That is the finest written philosophy of my watercolor explorations that I've ever encountered, thank you.

apr 11, 2008, 12:39 pm

"art does not reproduce the visible; rather, it makes visible." paul klee

Redigeret: apr 11, 2008, 1:03 pm

Hello. I just joined the group, after watching it for several months. My two favorite painters are Edward Hopper and Andrew Wyeth (as DMTripp mentioned above). I also have a soft spot for the surrealists, specifically Salvador Dali and Rene Magritte. My favorite classic "unknown" painter (he receives little attention) is Gustave Caillebotte.

apr 11, 2008, 4:33 pm

Mejix, thanks for the Klee quote. I'm going to use it in a couple of weeks when I introduce him to my art history classes. I had not come across this one. What a great way of defining the activity of a creative spirit. Welcome to the group, Monohex. Always glad to meet another who has deep regard for Hopper and Andrew Wyeth. I just spent the afternoon chatting with a Boston artist (visiting Texas for 2 weeks) who trained at the Art Institute in Boston, and creates watercolors with a real Hopperesque look--his juxtaposition of bright sun-washed surfaces with deep cool shadows make me shudder. He is a superb "technician" but I love his soulful way of discussing why he creates art, and how profoundly moved he is when a scene from his everyday life "clicks" and he feels a moment of epiphany, and subsequently seeks ways to turn it into a painting.

apr 11, 2008, 5:02 pm

See my profile for a userpic by my favorite painter, and a link to her website.

apr 12, 2008, 12:41 am

>39 DMTripp:

isn't klee great? glad you liked the quote DM.

Redigeret: apr 12, 2008, 4:05 pm

One of my favorite paintings is "World Dust" by Mark Tobey.
"I have discovered many a world on paving stones and tree bark." Mark Tobey, from Abstract Expressionism: Works on Paper
I think he has been overshadowed and forgotten but his MESH paintings and white writings suggest "cosmic realms."

Redigeret: apr 12, 2008, 5:05 pm

>42 ravendory:

the art institute of chicago has a great tobey painting which i haven't seen on the wall in ages. he does seem to have been overshadowed. i love his work, or at least the work that i've seen.

speaking of artists that time forgot, the art institute has a show by an artist i knew nothing about -james bishop- that is fantastic. they are showing small paintings on paper, i think no bigger than 5" x 5". mostly white and grey paint, and pencil. abstract, minimalist but not cold at all. very intimate.

i was going to put a link to the museum but of course the image they are showing is the one painting on canvas that doesn't look like anything else on the show. in any case reproductions don't do them justice, i think.

apr 12, 2008, 8:54 pm

Thanks for the tip, Mejix. I'm flying up to the Art Institute next weekend to study the Hopper exhibit. I'll be there four days, and will plan on checking out James Bishop as well. It's been 15 years since I've been up there, and I can't wait to see those wonderful works in the permanent collection as well.

Redigeret: apr 12, 2008, 9:01 pm

>43 mejix:

If you particularly love drawings...
check out

apr 12, 2008, 11:34 pm

>44 DMTripp:

DM there is a lot of construction at the art institute because of the expansion and not everything in their collection is on show now. the hopper show however will not disappoint you. i loved it and everybody i've spoken to about it loved it. its actually kind of a surprise because of the way it has been presented. its a very different Hopper from the one i had in my mind.

>45 ravendory:
Raven, the drawing center yes, i went there last thanksgiving. they put up really interesting stuff, and they are pretty cool people too. thanks!

Redigeret: apr 12, 2008, 11:48 pm

Aw, David #36, now you've made me go all mushy. As a writer, my greatest goal is to shake people up with a few carefully chosen words! Thank you.

I'm fond of Wyeth, too. I think it's the melancholy behind all those fine details. As in your work, there's a sense of nostalgia. I know he was painting contemporary scenes and people, but for me, there's such a feeling of the evanescent in his work.

apr 27, 2008, 1:04 pm

I'm dripping with Edward Hopper now. I spent three days in Chicago at the Art Institute, soaking his exhibit. I just couldn't leave. I don't know how many hours I spent in just his exhibit over those three days. I have returned to a serious study of Hopper's watercolors, particularly those of New England towns, seascapes and countrysides. I hadn't noticed before, but he was so meticulous and controlling with his oil compositions, planning out every aspect of composition. On the other hand, with his watercolors, he was spontaneous, and made many discoveries. I've been so uptight and detailed in watercolor for so many years--probably because of the drybrush details of Andrew Wyeth--that I got away from the splashy washes and accidents that are all over the Hopper works. Such freshness! Anyway, I have four new ones in progress--looser, happier, brighter--and am having the time of my life. So--it's Hopper for now.

apr 27, 2008, 7:40 pm

I would never have the patience to paint like Wyeth! I love his work, but sometimes it's good to loosen up.

apr 27, 2008, 8:31 pm

>48 DMTripp:

the two things that kind of surprised me about that hopper show were the colors and the brushwork. the walls of the museum were all dark so the colors of the paintings really popped. and the brushwork was so much looser than i would would've thought. i had never realized how sensuous these paintings are. hopefully i'll go again before the show closes and finally sit down to watch the video.

apr 27, 2008, 11:06 pm

How long will the show be there?

apr 27, 2008, 11:44 pm

Theresa, the show closes May 10. It's worth every dollar and hour spent--the best show I've seen in over a decade. Mejix, I was surprised too at the colors. Teaching art history and relying on slides and color plates all these years yielded me a picture of Hopper that was inacurate. His colors are much, much stronger. And I couldn't believe how many complementary red and green arrangements he has employed that have been cancelled out in the reproductive process. So many of the gray areas of reproduction are just explosive in the original compositions. I bought the video and have already played it four times here at home. Margad, I hear your point about Wyeth. I don't know why, but I've always gotten great satisfaction "noodling" away at details that seem to take so long. And I've liked the finished product. But now, looking at the loose Hopper watercolors, I'm going in a completely different direction. And so far, it's really satisfying. I've been uptight too many years.

apr 28, 2008, 2:56 am

#52: I notice that people with an idealistic temperament often pay an inordinate amount of attention to details. My paintings and drawings were also heavy on the detailing, and so was my writing. I see this in my students, also. I think idealists have to learn to accept the "happy accident" that people with an artisan temperament find so easy to give themselves over to. I loved doing gesture drawings of nudes when I was in college because I enjoyed being fast, free, and fluid. I also found myself to be totally in the moment while doing gesture drawings in a way that I wasn't when doing the more detailed work.

maj 15, 2008, 11:50 pm

I seem to have neither artistic temperament nor taste but I nevertheless love Edward Hopper and Vincent Van Gogh.

maj 16, 2008, 11:15 am

Yes, Hopper and Van Gogh. After all these years, I'm still mystified at how these two made their colors stand out so boldly. They have combinations that I myself always thought were too shaky. But they work, and the pictures just explode with attention. And the men are so opposite--Van Gogh's work show a frenzy, whereas Hopper's work is so reposed.

maj 16, 2008, 12:07 pm

I've always loved this one by Jan Van Eyck:

I love the colours, the light and shadow. I also like the symbolism of the different objects in the painting. Symbolism is part of the reason I tend to prefer older paintings to modern ones.

maj 16, 2008, 12:55 pm

I would love for some of you to write in detail about how you enter a painting.

Regarding the Van Eyck above, a painting I have always loved too, I always enter at the bottom left where the shoes point the way. Then I go up the man's robe and my eye jumps from his bent arm to the hanging candleabra.

I enjoy the repetition of the shape of the man's arm and the arm on the candleabra. Then I enjoy the hanging drapes and how that shape is repeated in the fur on the sleeve of the woman's dress.

I follow the folds of the dress down and then over to the little dog. Then the dog's tail points to the rug which leads me to the furniture in the background.

Then I'm at the mirror, the roundness of the mirror is repeated in the shapes of the man's hat and the woman's head scarf.

For some reason, I always enter this painting this way. And I end by contemplating the hands reaching out to each other.

maj 18, 2008, 1:38 am

Phlox, what fun to suddenly come upon that burst of color! I had never realized before how colorful that painting is. I guess, because the betrothed couple are so formal in their bearing, I remembered the colors as more subdued than they are. But look at those rosy, warm bed hangings! And the spring green of her gown! Even the man's furred mantle is an especially rich brown. Look at that strip of rug behind the woman's skirts - it looks no different from the Persian rugs I've seen in lots of people's houses.

Theresa, I never noticed the shoes before - thank you for pointing them out. I don't know quite what to make of them. They do make me think of the fact that at certain times in European history, the streets were full of raw sewage, and the upper classes wore elevated shoes to keep their feet out of it.

I don't believe I especially noticed the round mirror on the back wall until I read a commentary on the painting. Now, it's always the first thing that draws my eye.

maj 18, 2008, 10:38 am

margad, was that the purpose of the chopine shoes?

When we were first married, my husband wrote a poem for me in which he said: "As in a pair of chopine her gentle brush will set you high." It was so sweet. :-)

maj 18, 2008, 12:31 pm

margad - yes it is a beautiful painting isn't it. It is one I would love to see in real life someday.
As for how I "enter" or view the painting - I have always looked first at the couple, especially the lady, her face and her dress. Then I would see their linked hands. That would lead me to the mirror behind them. Then the chandelier. Only after a while would I notice the little dog and the shoes. It's a fun painting to gaze at because each element symbolizes some aspect of fidelity and fertility ( so I have read). It would have made a wonderful wedding present.

maj 19, 2008, 12:15 am

Ivan Aivazovsky's paintings of the sea.. you'll never stand before any painting of the ocean with so much light and color that will take your breath away like his.

maj 19, 2008, 12:27 am

>60 Phlox72:

hey phlox how did you insert the image in the post? would love post some images too.

maj 21, 2008, 1:23 pm

Denne meddelelse er blevet slettet af dens forfatter.

maj 21, 2008, 1:25 pm

Denne meddelelse er blevet slettet af dens forfatter.

maj 21, 2008, 1:27 pm

third try might just work! The Pisces in me loves this stained glass in the Field Museum:

maj 21, 2008, 5:51 pm


maj 22, 2008, 8:47 pm

The only way I know to post an image is to copy it to photobucket, flikr or other internet account. Then you copy and insert the picture HTML code and ta-da! Clearly I'm not that good at it or I would not have needed 3 tries - I get confused as to which of the many codes is the correct choice. Harder still is finding a quality image - I have a poster of this work and it is so much more beautiful than the jpeg. Sigh.

maj 23, 2008, 9:20 pm

"couple in bed" by philip guston. not my favorite guston but one i that i remember fondly. when i first saw this painting - at the art institute of chicago i was very angry. i thought it was a joke and didn't have any place in the museum. oddly enough the painting appeared in my dreams that same night and within months i was imitating this cartoonish style. oddly enough i wasn't the first person to have that type of reaction. guston's abandonment of abstraction in favor of figuration is now legendary.

maj 24, 2008, 12:00 am

That's a great story about your relationship with Guston's painting. I recognize those shoes from other Guston paintings. Stanley Kunitz wrote a great poem in reponse to a Guston painting. I ran across it in a book called Transforming Vision, Writers on Art. It was Kunitz's poem that first got me interested in Guston. The painting is "The Green Sea" and the poem is "The Sea, That Has No Ending."

maj 24, 2008, 12:17 pm

oh that sounds like an interesting book. i tried to google the poem but its not online. now i'm curious. i love poems about art works or artists. they can be very illuminating.

Redigeret: maj 24, 2008, 1:19 pm

It is an excellent book: I believe that it is no longer in print and, as I remember, I bought it used from Amazon. Here is part of the Kunitz poem:

The Sea, That Has No Ending
by Stanley Kunitz

Who are we? Why are we here,
huddled on this desolate shore,
so curiously chopped and joined?--
broken totems, a scruffy tribe!
How many years have passed
since we owned keys to a door,
had friends, walked down familiar streets
and answered to a name?

maj 25, 2008, 2:14 am

I've been checking out a lot of Kandinsky lately. I've been trying to pay attention to his detail to color and the play between whimsy and the slightly darker elements underneath. I feel it'll help with my writing and appreciation of reading more.

maj 25, 2008, 2:51 pm

i think this is the painting the kunitz poem refers to. sorry i couldn't find a larger image. i love that last sentence and how it refers to the anonymity of the figures in most of guston's paintings. thank you for sharing!

maj 25, 2008, 3:54 pm

Yes, that is the painting! The poem goes on for quite a few more lines. It's a beauty.

jun 10, 2008, 6:38 pm

I've been thinking about Degas and Chagall a lot lately. Also, Eugene Carriere...the way the figures in his portraits are always on the verge of disappearing.

Redigeret: jun 10, 2008, 8:33 pm

This Eugene has seen a few derrieres that made me stop and appreciate their artistic loveliness. Not familiar with Carriere, tho.

jul 1, 2008, 7:19 pm

I'm interested in a couple of Czech painters:
Franz Kupka and Max Svabinsky. Both working around the first half of the 2oth cent. Kupka was
one of the first abstract painters. Svabinsky was
a realist, figure painter.

jul 2, 2008, 11:46 pm

Mark Rothko.....
I like to stand up close, about five or six feet and have it just take over all my thoughts.

sep 6, 2012, 4:10 pm

Oh, can this thread not be re-newed? Such an interesting discussion and I would love to talk about paintings. There are so many I like, I love Mark Rothko and there is one study of clouds by Constable in the Tate that I always have to see when I am in London, but since tros mentioned Czech painters, my favourite here is Josef Čapek. He was the brother of one of the greatest Czech authors, Karel Čapek, and co-wrote several of his plays (they came up with the word robot). His art ranges from realistic, to cubist to naive- with simple lines that express so much. I can´t pick one painting, with him it is the development and also, the humbless and humility that shines out of every single of his works. Among the last oils he did were protests against Nazism- he was also one of the first people in Czechoslovakia arrested and died in concentration camp.