Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Two New Paintings

Since my last post a month ago, I've finished two small paintings. Both are compositions of a woman holding an object in her hand. Together with the paintings of women and chocolate truffles that I made in January, this seems to be my theme so far this year. It's a basic subject that I've always enjoyed and trying to make a visually rich painting out of a few minimal elements can be much more challenging than its outward simplicity suggests.

Woman with Camcorder
6" x 3 3/4"     oil on linen     2013

Beach Ball
3/4" x 4 3/4"     oil on linen    2013
Private Collection, New York
As for the narrative, the image of a person or a saint with an iconic symbol identifying the saint or signifying an attribute of the person, has a long and rich tradition in art history. Young Woman with a Carnation, by Hans Memling, is among my favorite paintings in the Metropolitan Museum ... very beautiful color and composition. In this painting, the carnation symbolizes pure love and betrothal, and according to Flemish custom of the day, a pink carnation was worn by the bride on her wedding day.

Young Woman with a Carnation
Hans Memling
17" x 7 3/8"     oil on panel     ca. 1485/1490

Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York
Below, a painting by Max Beckmann, another artist I admire very much ... this one a portrait of his wife, Quappi, also holding carnations.

Resting Woman with Carnations
Max Beckmann
35 1/2" x 28"     oil on canvas     1940/1942
Sprengel-Museum, Hanover

1 comment:

  1. Hey Andrew -- I appreciate the way you illuminate the aesthetic/intellectual/historical provenance of your paintings. Fascinating.



"There is more power in telling little than in telling all."
- Mark Rothko

“The mind loves the unknown. It loves images whose meanings are unknown, since the meaning of the mind itself is unknown.”
- Magritte

"Now, the idea is to get everything right -- it's not just color or form or space or line -- it's everything all at once."
- Richard Diebenkorn

“What I am seeking is not the real and not the unreal but rather the unconscious,
the mystery of the instinctive in the human race.”
- Amedeo Modigliani