Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Monet, Van Gogh, Cezanne and Klimt as Teaching Partners

The paintings in an exhibit which opened today March 4th, at the Smurfit Stone Library in Bathurst are the result of two sessions of "Painting Like the Masters", a course given by Adrienne Elfner-Hazen, B.F.A., at the Bay Breeze Art Gallery in Bathurst.  The artists taking part in this study were Rita May Gates, Sherley Kenny, Priscilla Laffoley, Laura Lavoie and Rosita Sprohge.

Here you will see how the Impressionist Painters defied the traditionalist painters to create a new order of painting.  They painted every day life, peasants working in the fields or attending to animals in the pastures.  They also developed a new style of painting, concentrating on broken brush strokes allowing underlying color to come through.  This was a rebellion against the tradition of blending all brush strokes to achieve a form of realism not unlike photography.  This is very evident in the works of Monet, and Van Gogh.

Artists like Cezanne, broke up their paintings into simplified shapes that were often geometric in design.  Cezanne, one of the Impressionists, often painted Mont St. Victorie in France.  Rita May Gates and Sherley Kenny have successfully re-created Cezanne's work in this manner.  

Although Gustav Klimt was not an impressionist he was an Austrian artist from the same time period who brought symbolism into the forefront in his exquisite paintings.  Klimt loved painting women both in portraits and in larger concepts such as the "Three Stages of a Woman's Life".  He used gold and silver in special gilding techniques so there is often a lot of shimmer and dazzle in his works.  In April of this year a new movie, "Women in Gold" will be released staring Helen Mirren based on the golden painting of Adele Bauch-Bauer.  This painting has been reproduced here by Sherley Kenny.

We also have some paintings here, that are totally the creation of the artists themselves but where they have used the learned techniques of the masters to achieve translation of their ideas onto canvas.  The show will be on for the month of March and possibly the month of April as well.

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