Landscape with Snow (1888)

Landscape with Snow (1888)
Painted in February of 1888, Van Gogh painted the dreary furrowed fields of winter. A lone figure with his dog trudge toward home. Located in the Guggenheim, I was moved to view this painting this past weekend.

Friday, December 31, 2010

Henri Matisse

Happy Birthday Henri Matisse!! Born on the last day of 1869, Matisse came from a poor family in the Northern part of France near the Belgian border.  Although he studied law and even passed the bar exam, Matisse discovered his true passion in art while recovering from an illness. He began to paint with the supplies his mother gave him and found his calling. He attended the Academie Julian for a time, leaving to create and experiment on his own. Matisse produced his most ambitious work from the period 1905-1915, establishing himself as a leader in the "Fauvist" style. For Matisse, flat planes, expressive color and sometimes patterned backgrounds united to create art that was "devoid of any relaxing as a comfortable arm chair". He regarded himself as an expressionist, stating, “Expression to my way of thinking does not consist of the passion mirrored upon a human face or betrayed by a violent gesture. The whole arrangement of my picture is expressive.” The painting included here today is titled "The Dance".

It is hard to believe that it has been a full year since I began this blog. I have had such an incredible experience, learned so much, with my commitment to post each day. As I reminisce over the past 365 days I have gone back and forth whether to commit to a second year of celebrating artists' birthdays. On one hand it has been tricky with the traveling we do, sometimes to find a computer, post each day. On the other hand, though, I can hardly imagine not beginning each day imparting my knowledge to others, so I have come to the realization that I do need to keep going forward with this experience. So, Happy New Year and see you in 2011!!

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