July Offerings – Part XXVII: Something to Delight both Head and Heart

American Art – Part I of V: Amy Abshier-Reyes

Artist Statement: “I was raised on the Texas Gulf Coast, in a small farming and ranching community. I moved to Kansas City, Missouri to attend classes at the Kansas City Art Institute, where I received my bachelor’s degree in fine art in 1997. I relocated to Ventura, California in 2001, and my husband and I moved back to Kansas City in the spring of 2005. I’ve done illustrations for books, magazines, and album covers over the years, but I’m really happy doing my own thing these days.
A lot of people ask where I get ideas and inspiration for paintings. The ideas really do come from all over: looking at old photos or costumes or fashion books, conversations (usually overheard–I love eavesdropping. Shameful.), dreams… Sometimes just sitting down and drawing without thinking of anything in particular will produce something cool. Music is definitely something I’m passionate about (my husband and I met working together at a record store), and it plays an important role in my work as well. And I love looking at stuff! Fashion, architecture, art, design, interiors–there’s so much to see and so much to get excited about, just that in itself makes me want to paint.”

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From the Music Archives: Leon Wilkeson

Died 27 July 2001 – Leon Wilkeson, American guitarist and bassist of the Southern rock band Lynyrd Skynyrd from 1972 until his death.

American Art – Part II of V: Adam Rhude

Artist Statement: ‘I aim to portray the beauty in everyday life. In recording the familiar, I find things I can connect with. It is my hope these subjects, that carry personal meaning to me, might also offer unique meaning to others.
Some of my earliest artistic influences were golden age illustrators. N.C. Wyeth was a particular favorite of mine whose work inspired me to major in illustration at the Savannah College of Art and Design. Throughout the next few years I was able to accept a wide variety of illustration assignments including editorial, advertising, print, book as well as storyboards.
I moved to New York City with the intention of furthering my illustration career. Ironically, exposure to the cities exceptional art collections changed my course dramatically. I discovered artists such as: Velasquez, Sargent, Sorolla, Chardin, and the Tonalists. I soon abandoned my commercial illustration pursuits in hopes of becoming a fine artist. I was extremely fortunate to have found some of the cities most respected traditional painters offer me a classical art training. I studied most extensively under Jacob Collins, Michael Grimaldi and Ron Sherr.
Having grown up on Cape Cod, I was exposed to lots of working artists and idyllic places to draw and paint. Recently, I have returned to Massachusetts. I look forward to finding these things in my new neighborhood in Boston.”

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Died 27 July 1992 – Max Dupain, an Australian photographer.

Below – “Sunbaker”; “Street Scene”; “Sunrise at Newport”; “Chantilly, Paris”; “Lemington Colliery”; “Cane Train Drivers, Queensland”; “‘Eurella,’ North Queensland.”
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“We are always the same age inside.” – Gertrude Stein, American writer, poet, art collector, and author of “The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas,” who died 27 July 1946.

Some quotes from the work of Gertrude Stein:

“If you can’t say anything nice about anyone else, come sit next to me.”
“Everybody knows if you are too careful you are so occupied in being careful that you are sure to stumble over something. ”
“Everybody gets so much information all day long that they lose their common sense.”
“There ain’t no answer.
There ain’t gonna be any answer.
There never has been an answer.
There’s your answer.”
“Rose is a rose is a rose is a rose”
“For a very long time everybody refuses and then almost without a pause almost everybody accepts.”
“I do want to get rich but I never want to do what there is to get rich. ”
“A very important thing is not to make up your mind that you are any one thing.”
“You are all a lost generation.”
“You are so afraid of losing your moral sense that you are not willing to take it through anything more dangerous than a mud-puddle. ”
“You are extraordinary within your limits, but your limits are extraordinary!”
“You have to know what you want to get it.”
“America is my country, and Paris is my home town.”
“When I go around and speak on campuses,
I still don’t get young men standing up and saying,
How can I combine career and family?”
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Argentinean Art – Part I of II: Karin Godnic

In the words of one critic, “The work of Karin Godnic (born 1977) offers us a fresh and nimble vision of the city, recovering those common areas that are traversed daily by its pedestrians. Godnic captures and collects images, appropriating in her painting those anonymous urban public spaces. Streets, expressways, ports, bridges, and tall buildings are the heterogeneous, noisy stages she chooses. Expressionism defines these scenes of marked color contrasts and energetic brushstrokes. Godnic’s work is a highly perceptive registry of the atmosphere of the city and it inhabitants.”

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Argentinean Art – Part II of II: Roger Mantegani

In the words of one critic, “Roger Mantegani (born 1957) has been inspired by the city of Paris with its museums, theaters, buildings, streets, river and people. Also inspiring him is New York where the magical and mysterious coalesce, creating in the same way as his paintings settings with strong visual impact and striking colors. From an early age he has been a tireless collector of objects such as hats, eye- masks, mirrors, photographs, furniture and family souvenirs, which he recreates under new forms, sizes, brilliance and color, thus producing special effects in the composition of his paintings. He has won many awards for his artworks since 1980.”

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“Each day of the year
I drink till I slump.

Though you married me
any sot would do.” – Peter Reading, English poet and author, who was born 27 July 1946 (died 2011).

In the words of one critic, “(Reading) is known for his choice of ugly subject matter, and use of classical metres. ‘The Oxford Companion to Twentieth-Century Poetry’ describes his verse as ‘strongly anti-romantic, disenchanted and usually satirical.’ Interviewed by Robert Potts, he described his work as a combination of ‘painstaking care’ and ‘misanthropy.’” It sounds like he was a splendid chap.

“Inflationary”

“In the old days

you would have been charged

one obolos to cross.

There became so many passengers

That the authorities

Had to lay on more ferries.

Today it will cost you

1,200 euros, £1,000, 1,377 US bucks, 130.380
yen

to achieve the further bank.”

Below – Joachim Patinir: “Landscape with Charon Crossing the Styx”
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In the words of one critic, Canadian painter Olaf Schneider “uses color, light, and brushwork to achieve visual harmony. He captures the movement of water, as well as the freshness and clarity of sunlight, which seems to glisten on his surfaces.” In describing his artistry as well as that of other representational painters, Schneider has said, “Each dab is stimulated by the details that I observe; we see what others miss and then make it compelling.”

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“I would insist that poetry is a normal human activity and its proper concern all the things that happen to people.” – Michael Longley, Irish poet from Belfast in Northern Ireland, who was born 27 July 1939.

“Boat”

What’s the Greek for boat,

You ask, old friend,

Fellow voyager

Approaching Ithaca –

Oh, flatulent sails,

Wave-winnowing oars,

Shingle-scrunching keel –

But, so close to home,

There’s a danger always

Of amnesiac storms,

Waterlogged words.

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Born 27 July 1768 – Joseph Anton Koch, an Austrian painter who was a member of the German Romantic movement.

Below – “Waterfalls at Subiaco”; “Heroic Landscape with a Rainbow”; “The Schmadribachfall”; “Grindewald Glacier”; “The Lauterbrunner Valley.”

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From the American History Archives – Part I of II: Electric Tricycle

27 July 1888 – American inventor Philip Pratt unveils the first American electric tricycle. Built in conjunction with engineer Fred Kimball and weighing about 300 pounds, the vehicle’s 10 lead-acid cells created 20 volts to a 0.5 horsepower motor, and it had a top speed of 8 miles-per-hour.

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Here is the Artist Statement of Colombian painter Alexandre Monntoya (born 1974): “Painting is a way of expression, a constant internal search and from the moment I began to paint I have used several landscapes of colour. At first I expressed myself with the typical colouring of a tropical climate, then I was plunged into the chaos of not knowing where to go, I was inside a world of greys and from that basis I have been giving way to the warmth, the colours and the shapes that I show today.
I wish to show an everyday moment in a sweet manner, which is natural and full of passion and sensuality.
From a personal view point I also look for the merging of two energies, two opposites, two forces, the good and the bad, light and darkness, which when united, create a balance, a balance that gives way to shapes and spaces thus allowing you to glance at an instant of feelings and beauty.”

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From the American History Archives – Part II of II: Bugs Bunny

27 July 1940 – Bugs Bunny debuts in “A Wild Hare.”

American Art – Part III of V: Mabel Alvarez

In the words of one critic, “Mabel Alvarez (1891 – 1985) “was an American painter. Her works, often introspective and spiritual in nature, and her style are considered contributing factors to the Southern California Modernism and California Impressionism movements.”

Below -“In the Garden”; “The Italian Model”; “Herman”; “The Figure at the Window”; title unknown; “Carmen”; “Hawaiian Boy”; “Self-Portrait.”

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American Art – Part IV of V: Louie Metz

In the words of one critic, “The recent works of Louie Metz have earned him a special distinction among the Los Angeles art community, where he has had numerous shows. Louie is a prolific artist, casting local Los Angeles personalities to model as his intense survivors. His subjects are usually offset by anthropomorphic landscapes: a suburban backyard, and apartment courtyard, a sweeping vista, all rendered in a way that reflects the subject’s inner psychological reality. ‘Luckily the models are usually going through some kind of psycho drama,’ he says, ‘which makes it interesting.’ There is a traditional aspect to Louie’s work that reflects a deep interest in the work of the old masters; however, Louie conveys a classicism without investing the work with a classical style. ‘I don’t usually like contemporary art that looks pretentiously Old Masterish as I find that its a prevailing tendency for figurative painters to stylize their paintings with too many jokey pop-cultural references and self conscious chiaroscuro.’
Complexity and straight forwardness, tradition and personal vision, beauty and brutality; are issues that conflict in life and art, yet because of their importance to the painter they must be dealt with and synthesized in his work.”

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Louie Metz

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Died 27 July 1996 – Ivan V. Lalic, Serbian poet whose work has been translated into more than twenty languages. In her obituary of him, Celia Hawkesworth spoke of “the central place in his work of memory: fragile in the face of the collapse of civilisations, but all we have. Memory allows the poet to recreate brief instants of personal joy as well as to conjure up a sense of the distant past. It allows each of us, as individuals condemned to solitude, to connect with a shared inheritance and feel, for a moment, part of a larger whole.”

“Places We Love”

Places we love exist only through us,
Space destroyed is only illusion in the constancy of time,
Places we love we can never leave,
Places we love together, together, together,

And is this room really a room, or an embrace,
And what is beneath the window: a street or years?
And the window is only the imprint left by
The first rain we understood, returning endlessly,

And this wall does not define the room, but perhaps the night
In which your son began to move in your sleeping blood,
A son like a butterfly of flame in your hall of mirrors,
The night you were frightened by your own light,

And this door leads into any afternoon
Which outlives it, forever peopled
With your casual movements, as you stepped,
Like fire into copper, into my only memory;

When you go, space closes over like water behind you,
Do not look back: there is nothing outside you,
Space is only time visible in a different way,
Places we love we can never leave.

Below – Barbara McCauley: “Woman Walking Away”
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Polish painter Monika Detkos studied in the Sztuk Pieknych Academy in Gdansk.

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A Poem for Today

“The Light By The Barn,”
By William Stafford

The light by the barn that shines all night
pales at dawn when a little breeze comes.

A little breeze comes breathing the fields
from their sleep and waking the slow windmill.

The slow windmill sings the long day
about anguish and loss to the chickens at work.

The little breeze follows the slow windmill
and the chickens at work till the sun goes down–

Then the light by the barn again.

Below – Brooke Korter: Photograph of barn in Victor, Idaho.
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American Art – Part V of V: Raina Gentry

In the words of one critic, “Raina’s artwork incorporates her studies in printmaking, life drawing, collage, and painting, and is heavily influenced by her education at Prescott College. She views each canvas as a playground for her psyche – each piece evolving naturally and intuitively, with little structure or expectation about the final outcome. Through this organic approach to art-making, Raina believes that she taps into, and expresses universal themes that many people can identify with. Through complex layering of various media, with a focus on the human form, and nature, she creates meaningful, evocative works that draw her viewers in.”

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