Archive | May, 2011

Silence is Golden

17 May

Today is our last day in Florida. All of our earthly belongings are either in storage, waiting to be taken to storage or packed up to go with us to the Northwest. We’ll be taking a somewhat leisurely drive across the country, with stops in Tulsa, OK, Denver, CO, Mesa Verde National Park in CO and Hood River, OR. I’m looking forward to hitting some artsy spots in those places and sharing them with you, once we are settled in Washington.

As I’ve mentioned on the blog’s Facebook page, I had big plans to write a bunch of posts ahead of time and schedule them to post while I am gone.. yeah, that didn’t happen. But I hope that you’ll drop by and maybe check out a few of the older posts you may have missed. There’s some good stuff that only a handful of people saw those first few weeks.. ūüôā

Take care everyone, will see you on the Left Coast!
Lesley

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Masterworks Monday: Jack the Dripper

9 May

A polarizing¬†persona in the art world, Jackson Pollock, called “Jack the Dripper” by some, figured largely in the Abstract Expressionist movement in America.¬† His work¬† is such of the “love it” or “hate it” variety and it can often strike a chord with those who least expect it.¬†

Untitled, No. 3 by Jackson Pollock

I remember taking a basic Art Appreciation class early on in college, with a good friend from high school.¬† Said friend was very conservative in most aspects and usually preferred the more realistic artwork we studied– but she loved Pollock’s work.¬† There was just something about it that she responded to.

Untitled, No. 8 by Jackson Pollock

Pollock’s process, referred to as “action painting”, involved several aspects that were innovative at the time– Pollock laid his canvases¬†unstretched¬†out on the floor, instead of stretched on an easel, utilizing household paints instead of more traditional oils and instead of brushing the paint on, dipped whatever was on hand into the paint and then slashed¬† & dripped it onto the canvas.

Green Silver by Jackson Pollock

I remember being intrigued by Pollock and his work, but it wasn’t until I saw one of his pieces up close & personal, in an Abstract Expressionist exhibition at the Cummer Museum in Jacksonville, that I truly became a fan.¬† Seeing the monumental scale of the work, the depth of the paint and being able to recognize that yes, there truly was a method to his madness in all those drips and splatters, sealed the deal for me.

Blue Poles by Jackson Pollock

I realize we don’t all share the same aesthetic tastes.¬† How about you?¬† Are you a fan of “the Dripper”?

Friday Forager Faves: To All Who Serve

6 May

I know it’s been quiet around here the last few days.¬† George & I are down to less than two weeks left in Florida and things are getting a bit harried.¬† But I didn’t want to skip this Friday Faves, due to its importance.¬† Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve seen the headlines that earlier this week US Navy Seals found and killed 9-11 mastermind Osama Bin Laden.¬† While I am glad that this evil has been removed from the world, I would prefer to focus attention on those who give their lives so that we may be free.¬† So, here are a few favorite images that, for me, evoke the emotion of what it means to risk your life so that others gain freedom.

Parade to War, Allegory by John Steuart Curry, Collection of the Cummer Museum of Art & Gardens

 Untitled, mixed media by Eric Gilyard

Half Staff by Pamela Viola

Masterworks Monday: Frida Kahlo

2 May

In honor of Cinco De Mayo¬†this week, I thought we’d focus today on the amazing Frida Kahlo.¬† When I was in painting classes in college, I remember there being this¬†older Bolivian lady who was auditing the classes and she was obsessed with Frida Kahlo.¬† She was sweet but somewhat obnoxious.¬† For a long time, the fact that she was so obsessed with Kahlo managed to turn me off on her artwork.¬† Weird how our minds work sometimes.¬†

But then, somewhere along the line, I let go of this irrational bias and took another look at Kahlo and her work.  And I was quickly won over.  Health problems plagued Kahlo from a young age, suffering first from polio and then being severly injured in a horrific car accident which left her in a full body cast and bedridden for three months.  Though she eventually recovered from her injuries, extreme pain would torment her for the rest of her life.

¬† Before the accident, Kahlo¬†was studying to become a physician, but she dealt with the boredom of being confined to bed by taking up painting with her father’s watercolors.¬† And so, Frida Kahlo, the artist was born.

Kahlo’s work often included symbols of Mexican mythology, as well as those of Christian and Jewish faiths.¬† Though she is perhaps best known for her self-portraits, often depicting events in her own life, such as the accident, subsequent miscarriages, etc.

She married renown Mexican muralist, Diego Rivera in 1929 and their life together was a tumultous one.

Her work has been described as surrealist, but I think it is the unvarnished depiction of her real life pain and struggle that makes her work so interesting and relatable. We may not have all been through the kind of physical pain Kahlo experienced, but perhaps it is that we can all certainly relate to her emotional pain and the need to express it on canvas.

Be sure to check out the official Frida Kahlo website.  A beautifully designed site full of interesting information about the artist.