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Showing posts from September, 2018

Talking about Hopper & Burchfield- Delaware Art Museum

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Edward Hopper (1882-1967), New York, New Haven, and Hartford,  oil on canvas, 1931, Indianapolis Museum of Art
The other week I flew out to Indianapolis on my way to Terre Haute to judge the Swope Art Museum's annual 5 state regional juried exhibition. I paid a visit to the impressive Indianapolis Museum of Art. Wanted to single out one painting in their collection, Edward Hopper's oil New York, New Haven, and Hartford. 



In person the subtlety of Hopper's color mixing is exquisite. My photographs don't come near doing the painting justice. But in these detail shots just above and below Hopper's grasp of how to instill personality into a painting is clear. He depicts a broad-shouldered hillside. Yet against that he conjures up these wildly shaped spindly trees. Their irregular rhythms contrast tellingly against the solemn massiveness of the hillside.  




Hopper's trees live perhaps a more syncopated life than the stately ground from which they spring.
Looking at Hopp…

Swope Art Museum Part II

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Zoltan Sepeshy, Wild Flowers, tempera, c. 1940. I love the way Sepeshy splashed bright yellow light on the  woman's  shoulders to contrast the enormous black hat she works on. His model is so substantial, almost like a sculpture.
Most artists, including me, need a great deal of distraction-free time so they can sort of fall into their own imagination to see where it will carry them. To be any good at all an artist has to embrace solitude as a friend.
We all need to feel we're part of something bigger. My circle includes artists from the past. Particularly helpful to me are American realist painters from the 1930's and '40's, an area where the Swope Museum of Art more than excels.
Jack Levine, A Joy Forever, oil, 1953. Levine combined sharp  social criticism with a unique style of a flickering broken  brushwork. Seen in person, the painting's surface becomes the star of the show. I'm sad my photo only begins to capture the feeling of Levine's paint handlin…

Jurying the Swope Art Museum's 5 State Regional Exhibition, Part I

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Last week I was out in Terre Haute, Indiana to judge the entries for the Swope Art Museum's 47th Annual Exhibition of artworks from the 5 state region. It was a sweet trip for me as I've long had a special place in my heart for the Swope.




Edward Hopper, Route 6, Eastham, oil, 1941,  collection Swope Art Museum


Philip Koch, Morning at the Route 6, Eastham House, oil, 30 x 60 inches, 2016, collection of Swope Art Museum

Some of that stems from the 30 painting strong exhibition of my work the Museum held in 2017. The Swope hung my big oil painting Morning at the Route 6, Eastham House next to the painting Edward Hopper made in 1941 of the same house and buildings. As Hopper was the biggest single influence on my direction as a painter, this was a huge honor for me. (How can I not love this museum after that). 

To the Swope's credit, it has maintained a juried regional exhibition for many decades, affording artists from the Midwest an opportunity to have their work accepted and hu…