"Like any Italian worth his garlic salt Annigoni can make a tasty omelet..."
Sunday, September 25, 2011
Saturday, September 10, 2011
Tuesday, September 6, 2011
I didn't know Mancini's name before seeing this painting, but later realized it was the same guy that painted another of my favorite pieces "resting" at the Chicago Institute (my post about the Chicago Institue). The reproductions available online are miserable, but this is one of the most arresting objects I've ever encountered. It commands the room it hangs in at the Philadelphia Art Museum, and I think I gasped when I first saw it. Its monumentality is startling and the longer you look it doesn't let you go.
The candy cane- striped pole by his foot almost looks out of place, like something you've never seen in an old painting. The delicate handling of the wallpaper patterns couldn't be more differently handled than the chunky, globby hair mass. Even the pupils of the eyes are convex blobs of paint that catch actual highlights on them.
I think one of the worst contributions of French impressionism and modernism to painting is the overuse and strict copy of color. Imagine this painting with a saturated palette of bright colors, it would kill the melancholy. The only pure colors are a few red notes in the still life. To me the saddest statement in the painting is the scraggly peacock feather, pitifully drooping from under his arm.
Friday, September 2, 2011
Adam Miller's paintings really hit home for me. Born in 1979, he's three years younger that me, he's to me one of the most exciting young painters of my generation. When I saw his paintings at first I was a little shocked at how close he came to things I had on the easel. Even the phone poles! But there are definitely differences the more I look at them.
What I admire most is the combination of solid drawing with movement, powerful design, and movement. The one above is my favorite. Such a perfect melancholy.