Saturday, August 30, 2008

Dogs and Cats - Joan Brown

The 1st Car, 1971
The Birthday Party, 1971.

Portrait of a Dog, 1971

Birthday Party detail

Joan Brown did a lot of paintings with her pets as well as many portraits of animals. There are animals featured in many of her paintings... here are just a few and a quote from Joan, herself.
"I strive for that delicate balance between reason and feeling, knowing that sometimes the pictures will lean one way or the other. I'm constantly trying to pull out new information from my intuitive self, which results in the surprises that I discover in my work, and which keeps me ever stimulated." Joan Brown (from the book, The Art of Joan Brown by Tsujimoto and Baas.)

Thursday, August 28, 2008


Mirabello Cavalori. Wool Factory. 1570-72. Oil on slate. Studiolo, Palazzo Vecchio, Florence.

Naturalism: An approach to art in which objects are depicted by the artist as they are empirically observed rather than according to stylistic or conceptual preconceptions. Art of the Greek Classical period is sometimes described as the first naturalistic art and that of the Italian Renaissance as a revival of naturalism. (Michael Clarke)

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Corbeled Vault

Corbeled gallery in the walls of the citadel, Tiryns - a Mycenaean palace.

Corbeled Vault (or gallery): A vault formed by the piling of rocks in horizontal courses, cantilevered inward until the 2 walls met in a pointed arch. No mortar is used, and the vault is held in place only by the weight of the blocks themselves, with smaller stones used as wedges. (Gardner)

Tuesday, August 26, 2008


Quilt: Padded bed cover or the method used to make padded covers or clothing. The padded effect is achieved by sewing a layer of down, cotton, wool, or other stuffing between two outer pieces of material; patterned sewing is used (often diamond shapes or floral motifs).

Quilts have been made in the home for centuries throughout Europe, the East, and more recently the USA. They are sometimes decorated with patchwork or embroidery. (Brockhampton)

These photographs are taken from the Buggy Barn annual quilt show last weekend. The show is in Reardan WA, located out in the Palouse. (an expansive farmland of rolling hills where mostly wheat is grown.) It's a beautiful country setting... the sun is always out for the show, the breeze blowing the quilts and sound of wheat rustling are just a few of the reasons why I go back every year. (this is the 2nd year I've shown my quilts there)

Monday, August 25, 2008

Polychrome: A term meaning painted, printed, or decorated in many colors. It is most frequently used in relation to sculpture, especially pre-Renaissance, much of which was originally colored. In the Renaissance white marble, in imitation of the antique, became the dominant material. A strong tradition of polychrome sculpture survived in religious art produced in Spain and Naples in the Baroque era and polychromy continued in the art of the Rococo in southern Germany and Austria. (Michael Clarke)

Saturday, August 23, 2008

A Small Camera Glitch...

I've just realized today that my camera battery charger was left behind at my mother's house! This is a problem when writing a blog... it doesn't seem quite right to post about art without a visual example. But, I will keep posting some quotes and definitions until the little 'missing piece' arrives.

Stay tuned. :O

Friday, August 22, 2008

Edouard Vuillard

(1868-1940). French painter, draughtsman, designer, and lithographer. In the 1890's he was a member of the Nabis and at this time painted intimate interiors and scenes from Montmartre, his sensitive patterning of flattish colors owing something to Gauguin and something to Puvis de Chavannes, but creating a distinctive manner of his own. He also designed posters and theatrical sets. From about 1900 he turned to a more naturalistic style and with Bonnard became the main practitioner of Intimisme, making use of the camera to capture fleeting, informal groupings of his friends and relatives in their homes and gardens. He had several close female friends and preferred painting women and children to men. His work also included landscapes and portraits. Although he was financially successful, he lived modestly, sharing an apartment with his widowed mother until her death in 1928; she often features in his paintings. He was reserved and quiet in personality, although affectionate and much liked. For many years he kept a detailed journal in which he revealed his thoughtful attitude towards art and life. (Ian Chilvers)

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Di Sotto In Su

Andrea Mantegna. Ceiling fresco, diameter 8' 9". 1465-74. Camera Pieta, Palazzo Ducale, Mantua.
Di Sotto In Su: Italian phrase that refers to the idea of looking up from below. A type of illusionism in painting, achieved by means of sharp foreshortening, in which the figures and architecture seem to be high above and receding from the spectator.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008


Nick: Slight notch out of what could otherwise be a continuous curved or straight line. (Rose Folsum)

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Violins... a personal rendition of multiples!

Multiples: A term designating works of art other than prints or cast sculpture that are designed to be produced in a large - potentially limitless - number of copies. Whereas prints and casts of sculptures are copies of an original work hand-made by the artist, multiples are different, for the artist often produces only a blueprint or a set of specifications for an industrial process of manufacture in materials such as plastic. Multiples were first made in the 1960's,
Le Parc and Oldenburg being early exponents. In theory, they represented a democratization of art, but in practice they are too expensive for a mass market and have been sold through galleries rather than high street shops. By about 1980 the idea seemed to be dying out, but there was a revival of interest in the 1990's. (Ian Chilvers)

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Art Makes Life...

Inscape I, by Mary Frank. Acrylic and oil on board, 1997. 48 x 96 ". Private Collection
Reach by Mary Frank. Acrylic and oil on canvas, 1997. 68 x 48". Collection of Joseph DeVernay.

'It is art that makes life, makes interest, makes importance... and I know of no substitute whatever for the force and beauty of its process.' Henry James - Letter to HG Wells, July 1915.

Friday, August 15, 2008


All Will Fall (Caprichos, pl. 19). Etching, and burnished aquatint.
Aquatint: A tonal method of printmaking that is used in conjunction with linear etching. The technique was invented by Jean Baptiste Le Prince (1734-81). As in etching, the copper plate is bitten by the action of immersion in acid. Granules of acid-resist laid on the plate result in a fine, reticulated patterning when the plate is inked and printed from, thus producing an effect not unlike a wash.
There are 2 distinct methods of aquatint. In the first a dust-box is used to blow particles of resin onto the copper plate. In the 2nd the resin is dissolved in alcohol which is brushed over the plate; as the alcohol evaporates, particles of resin are left on the plate. The artist can vary the tones of different parts of his aquatint by subjecting them to bitings in the acid-bath of differing duration. The parts he wishes to print relatively light in tone can be protected by coating with stopping-out varnish, resistant to acid; those that are to print darker can be rebitten. (Michael Clarke)

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Olaf Gulbransson

The actress Elenora Duse, 1905 by Olaf Gulbransson. From Beruhmte Zeitgenossen, Verlag Albert Langen, Munich.

Olaf Gulbransson: 1873-1958. Born in Oslo, Norway. Norwegian painter and graphic artist. He is one of the most important caricaturists of the 20th century. In his ironically naive, powerfully expressive drawings, he communicated the essential characteristics of his subject using only the most economic means, and later simply by use of outline. His major works include Beruhmte Zeitgenossen (famous contemporaries, 1905), Aus meiner Schublade (From my drawer, 1911) and his autobiography Es war einmal (Once upon a time, 1934). (Gabriele Fahr-Becker).

Wednesday, August 13, 2008


The Old Testament Trinity Prefiguring the Incarnation, 1410. Andrei Rublev. Painted wood, 56 x 45 " Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow.

Nimbus: A halo, aureole, or glory appearing around the head of a holy figure to signify divinity. (Tansey & Kleiner)

Monday, August 11, 2008

Raku Ceramics

Raku: Japanse pottery made for the tea ceremony, usually of an irregular shape and texture. It was fired at a low temperature and covered with a thick, usually dark, colored glaze. The name derives from the Japanese word 'enjoyment', which was adopted as a seal by the family of potters who first made this ware, circa 1580. (Michael Clarke)

These beautiful Raku tiles were made by Spokane artist, Chris Nylander. She also makes raku sculptures of women's faces that are breathtaking. I bought these at a yearly show called 'Inland Crafts' (formerly Inland Craft Warnings).

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Sand Sculptures

Just a quick post to say... I'm back home from the beach! Here a few fabulous sand sculptures in Port Angeles, WA... a few towns away from my beach visit. Be back tomorrow with a new artslice post!