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Tuesday, May 29, 2012

5 Great Places to See Art In NYC

"Afternoon Sun" - Joaquin Sorolla - 116x171 in.
Hispanic Society of America

3 artist friends and I went to New York City a couple of weeks ago and absolutely LOVED it. Amazing vibe, visual stimulation on every corner, fabulous art - it was total sensory overload! We stationed ourselves in a lovely brownstone on a tree lined residential street on the Upper East Side and ventured out each day to walk the city streets and explore.

If you only have a short time in NYC, here are a few not to be missed places to see representational art:

The Hispanic Society of America

"The Tuna Catch" - Joaquin Sorolla - 137x190 in.
Hispanic Society of America

The farthest museum to get to was the Hispanic Society of America in Harlem, but it was only a half hour subway ride for under $5 so no big deal - and so worth it to see these enormous, exquisite Sorollas. The added bonus of its distance from downtown NYC was that we had the whole museum to ourselves for the first half hour we were there.

The Mural Room - stunning.
Hispanic Society of America

The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Sargent at the Met

Ok, goes without saying you could spend a month in the Metropolitan Museum of Art and not see everything. We went for the paintings and barely scratched the surface, the collection of American and Impressionist paintings alone includes some of the most famous works ever painted, and seeing them live was breathtaking.

The Frick Collection
A third museum well worth checking out is the Frick. (Sorry no photos - they're prohibited.) It is an elegant museum housed in a former mansion built in the early 1900's with great period art, sculpture, furniture and architectural details.

Art Students League of New York

This one we stumbled across and were so glad we did, the caliber of student work was outstanding. You can book a residency here if you are interested in an atelier studio workshop experience - would love to do this - what a great way to develop artistic skill!

Chelsea was a bit hit and miss, but a wonderful, unexpected discovery was a show at the Bertrand Delacroix gallery by Francois Bard, a Parisian artist having his second show in NYC. These paintings are a classic example of lost in translation - the photos simply do not come close to doing the originals justice - we were absolutely blown away by this work. The show runs until June 2nd - if you're in New York - go see it! (details in the link)

"Not Guilty" - Francois Bard

"Untitled" - Francois Bard

Hugely inspired by the art, and even more so by the city, can't wait to get painting!

My fabulous travelling companions
L-R: Janice Robertson, Sarah Kidner, Jean Pederson

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Following Alice Down the Rabbit Hole

 "Fall Shadows"

In my last post I talked about finding a creative outlet that is not about commercial work - a place to go when you feel stuck or stalled and need to feed the fire in a fresh, imaginative way. One way that I love as passionately (and completely differently) than painting is following a camera wherever it might lead me. This in not about gathering painting reference, it is something uniquely its own, a treasure hunt for visual gems that stand on their own.

All you need is a camera, curiosity, and permission to completely lose yourself in the experience.

 "Dumpster Diving"

"Tree Wheel"

All of the photos in this post were taken within a 2 block radius, on the same evening, with my iPhone camera. It was very spur of the moment, and entirely captivating.

Just start looking, once you find your first thing, be open to what is possible and then watch what happens. Things will find you. It is truly remarkable how this works - it's like a magic thread drawing you in, one thing leading to the next, compelling you to follow them into a world of infinite possibilities. Things will appear that are unexpected and surprising, and have always been right there, waiting for you to notice them. Amazing.

 "Leaves on Brick"

"Primary Parking"

"Moments Apart"

Give it a whirl, doesn't have to be in the city, I do this often when I am out walking in the forest - there are things hiding in plain sight all around us...

"A good traveler has no definite plans and no intention of arriving." Lao Tzu