Tonal Painting / Modernist Grid
June 22 – July 6, 2015
Painting is seeing. What are the core qualities that we are able to perceive in the motif and how can we realize them on the canvas? How do we recognize an image that moves and excites us? How can we isolate qualities such as shape, color and value to help us build a painting? How can techniques such as sight measuring, the use of a plumb-line or a limited palette be used to reach our artistic goals?
The class will emphasize sensitivity toward tone using direct painting methods. The role of drawing is deemphasized in favor of seeing in terms of flattened shape and comparing and contrasting relationships of color and value among these shapes. Landscape is ideal for this kind of thinking because of the fluid, objectless quality of the motif.
A source of inspiration and a starting point for the course will be Hawthorne on Painting, Charles Hawthorne’s classic text, which consists of notes taken by his students during his classes. Hawthorne exhorts painters to see in “spots” of color that are in relationship with each other. Examples of this attitude can be readily seen in the work of Hawthorne’s most famous pupil Edwin Dickinson and Dickinson’s pupil Lennart Anderson. The work of artists found in the history of art, from Corot to Balthus, manifest this spirit as well. This attitude is not very different from modernist painting methodology that might stress the natural growth of a painting by means of an invisible grid or scaffold, which one can imagine spreading across the composition.
The studio day will be broken down into two parts – a morning session and an afternoon session. The day will begin with work in the landscape. In the afternoon students can choose to work in the landscape or in the studio with figure and still life, with one of the two faculty present in each location. Several days of the week will also end with a sunset/early evening painting session.
Slides: 1 Tim Kennedy Parsonage / Monte Acuto 2 Tim Kennedy Olive Trees 3 Tim Kennedy Pines / Glen Haven 4 Eve Mansdorf Polgetto 1 5 Eve Mansdorf Polgetto 2 6 Eve Mansdorf Monte Acuto Fields 7, 8, 9 Jean Baptiste Camille Corot 10, 11 Fairfield Porter 12, 13, 14 Edwin Dickinson 15, 16, 17 Lennart Anderson
Please do not hesitate to contact us with any questions.