Saturday, January 19, 2008

Another Barn

Once Upon a Time on the Plains
11 x 15 soft pastels on Art Spectrum Colourfix
Miki Willa

Several years ago, I drove across the country with my best friend. We loved so many things we saw. We stopped to take photos of silos, rolling corn fields, wild flowers, and barns. We were in South Dakota when we spotted this on at the end of a road that took us to a very small town. I am not sure why we were there, but I fell in love with this barn. The roof was nearly gone. It had been deserted for a while, but it still stood there telling its story. My friend, now my sister-in-law, used to have a large photo of it hanging in her house. I only have a small one in a photo album. I wonder if she remembers it.

Today is Cezanne's birthday. He was born to a wealthy father in 1836. He wanted to be an artist from a young age, but his father fought him on it. Eventually, he got his way. After time spent in art school in Aix en Provence, he headed to Paris. There he was introduced to Pissarro and Monet who convinced him to start painting outdoors. Before that, his paintings were dark and melancholy, often with a religious theme. Once he started painting outside, his pallet changed and he began painting with much more vivid colors. In 1872, he spent two years in Pontoise with Pissarro painting as much as he could outdoors. He entered works the annual Salon exhibit was always rejected. Twice, he entered his works in the Impressionists exhibit but they were soundly derided. He left Paris fed up with the city and the style of the Impressionists. He wanted to paint what he saw and felt. He began to develop his own strong style that did not worry about depth and dimension so much as feeling and color. It was twenty years before he exhibited his work after the last Impressionist show he entered. By the end of his life, his works were being recognized and selling well. Here is a still life of his to enjoy on his birthday.

Apples, Peaches, Pears, and Grapes
15 1/8 x 18 1/4 inches oil on canvas
Paul Cezanne
To see more of Cezanne's work, go here. To read more about him, go to this site.

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