Water Garden For A Blue Heron

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A visit to China 1000 years ago will find you in the Sung Dynasty, a period of unequalled landscape painting. The emperor had established an academy for artists. Painting and calligraphy were deeply connected. Gestures of the brush revealed energy, … Continued

Lessons From Rembrandt

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This past week brought me to a variety of Edinburgh’s  national museums and galleries where I twice visited a retrospective of Rembrandt’s work. He explored landscapes in addition to his portraits. The Dutch 17th century was century of landscape innovation … Continued

Under Construction

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Artists painting architecture can be found on the walls of Pompeii. The Roman architect Vitruvius wrote the canonical treatise on architecture celebrated to the present.  His fans included Palladio and Thomas Jefferson. Reconstructing classical architecture and geometry has been a … Continued

Reverberations through Touch

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In 1888-89 Van Gogh experimented with color contrasts applied in a pattern of touches (example 1) versus large continuous blended areas that had been the tradition in landscape painting. He was not alone. In Italy since the 1860s Macchiaioli landscape … Continued

Ships, Boats, and Harbors

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Beginning in the 17th century we can track many changes in style in Euro-American art history through harbor-scapes. Maritime business success in the 1600s in Holland created a new type of collector. This new merchant class affirmed their status through … Continued