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Posts Tagged ‘fine art’

to photograph its stained glass windows and along the way I stumbled upon Raphael’s Transfiguration (1516-1520). Not the original of course. That’s in the Vatican. This painting, which my guide at the time knew little about, appears to be a 19th century reproduction. The history of this particular painting – its creation and who gave it to the church – may be lost to history.  However, I’ve since learned from a research fellow at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts that such reproductions were popular and prints being produced as early as the 16th century.

Transfiguration was Raphael’s last painting. He died at the age of 37 leaving the painting incomplete. It is considered one of his most beautiful works out of a very large body of work. It was a treat to chance upon the reproduction and perhaps one day I will see the actual painting in person. Meanwhile, below is a photograph of Raphael’s handiwork and you can read details on the Vatican Museums website here.

Raphael’s Transfiguration, photo by Alvesgaspar, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=43522641

Additional Reading

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Raphael

http://www.mfa.org/collections/object/the-transfiguration-of-christ-31006

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Titian, active about 1506; died 1576 Bacchus and Ariadne 1520-3 Oil on canvas, 176.5 x 191 cm Bought, 1826 NG35 http://www.nationalgallery.org.uk/paintings/NG35

Bacchus and Ariadne, 1520-3, by Titian

In Titian’s painting of Bacchus and Ariadne, Bacchus, god of wine, emerges with his followers from the landscape. Falling in love with Ariadne, he leaps from his chariot, drawn by two cheetahs. Ariadne had been abandoned on the Greek island of Naxos by Theseus, whose ship is shown in the distance. Initially she is fearful. Eventually Bacchus raises her to heaven and turns her into a constellation, represented by the stars above her head. So the story is told on the website of the UK National Gallery where the painting is now housed. While wonderful to see such a work in a book or on the computer screen, it is a whole other experience to view it in person.

Painter Donald Langosy wrote about such an experience. He was a young poet chasing Ezra Pound around Venice. “But my meeting with Pound was overshadowed, quite unexpectedly, by entering the Frari church one day and finding myself facing Titian’s Assumption. … My encounter with Titian’s painting was an aesthetic epiphany.”

Assumption of the Virgin, by Titian

Assumption of the Virgin, by Titian

From Titian and other Venetian masters, Langosy would begin to understand how artistic technique was the servant of ideas.  He would share their work with his daughter, Zoe. “I learned what it meant when my father pointed to the sky and said, “It’s a Titian blue.”

Diana and Callisto by Titian

Diana and Callisto by Titian

Viewing Titian’s painting in person certainly influenced Langosy’s early work.

Detail from Flora by Langosy

Detail from Flora by Langosy

Pucinello by Langosy

Seeing Titian in later years would become an unexpected opportunity for two artists, father and daughter, to focus on the beauty to be found even during challenging times. In Zoe’s own words:

“Over the years, my father developed multiple sclerosis, and our once-frequent visits to the Boston Museum of Fine Arts or the Gardner Museum became increasingly rare. Shortly before my father lost the ability to walk entirely, he and my mother traveled to London, where I was living at the time. Walking with a cane and with great difficulty, he set out one day with one purpose: to see Titian’s Bacchus and Ariadne at the National Gallery. It was a masterwork that he had never before seen in person and, of all the great works of art in London, it was the one he refused to miss.  While my mother and I wandered through the nearby exhibits, he sat studying that single painting for nearly an hour.”

Detail from Bacchus and Ariadne by Titian

Detail from Bacchus and Ariadne by Titian

“As the years progressed, my father’s MS caused physical discomfort and fatigue that made it increasingly difficult for him to travel even as far as the local art museums we had enjoyed together. Our conversations about art never took place outside the comfort of the studio, living room, or kitchen at my parent’s home in the Boston suburb of Medford. Then, one day, we read in the newspaper about the “Rivals of Renaissance Venice” show at the MFA. That moment created a breakthrough. My father knew this was a show that he could not and would not miss.”

Detail from Venus with a Mirror by Titian, at the MFA 2009 Exhibit

Detail from Venus with a Mirror by Titian, at the MFA 2009 Exhibit

“We chose a time when we knew the museum would be quiet, and, on a hot summer morning, my father, mother, and I traveled into Boston to see the exhibit. Above all, we went to see the Titians. As I pushed my father in his wheelchair, we stopped for a long time at each painting. Sometimes we would quietly look at the art, while other times we would talk about what we saw. For the first time in many years, I was given the gift of being able to walk through a museum with my father again and share with him one of the things that we both love most: art. Visiting the show was highly enriching for all of us.  Since then, my father has found renewed strength to combat the hold that MS had placed on his activities, and he is determined to attempt such outings on a more regular basis.”

Zoe with her father's portrait of Elizabeth

Zoe with her father’s portrait of Elizabeth

Want to learn more?

View Langosy’s The Story of My Art: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6.

View four decades of Langosy’s work at http://www.donald.langosy.net/

See what’s current on Langosy’s Facebook page.

His contact: Zoe Langosy at zlangosy@me.com.

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artwork by carol moses

artwork by carol moses

I still have the postcard. Artist Carol Moses gave it to me years ago at a show. A postcard of one of her watercolor prints. White background, dark lines, red circles. An untitled piece, I think, but it didn’t really need a title. For me, it was like a scene that one could fall into and create one’s own story.  I am not a formal student of fine art but her paintings and drawings reminded me of what I’d seen of Joan Miro, and later of Wassily Kandinsky. At a recent exhibit, I heard Carol mention that when she’d learned of Kandinsky and seen his body of work, years after she’d already been producing art, it was like a validation of her work.

artwork by carol moses

artwork by carol moses

It has been my pleasure to interact with Carol at various shows over the years. She is a dynamo. She seems never at rest … until she is making art. No boundaries does she set for herself. She works in watercolor, drawing, printmaking and photography.

artwork by carol moses

artwork by carol moses

linoprint by carol moses

linoprint by carol moses

artwork by carol moses

artwork by carol moses

As a child she was into science and mathematics. Art and its freedom of expression would come later in her life as an adult.  As she produces these striking works, there is no particular intention, no concept in mind.  With a blank piece of paper before her and with brush or pen in hand, “The spigot just opens,” she said. “It is an unconscious thing.”

artwork by carol moses

artwork by carol moses

A private person, Carol is also one of the most giving people I know. She mentors artists of all media at all stages in their path even as she continues to explore and expand upon her artistic career.  If you have the opportunity to view her work firsthand at an exhibit or in a gallery, you’ll notice that most of her works are small. “When I began working, I didn’t have a formal studio. I had a kitchen table. I work small because I am used to being close to my work.”

artwork by carol moses

artwork by carol moses, “appreciatively, after visiting kandinsky”

View more of this artist’s beautiful work at http://carolmoses.com/

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donald langosy in the studio

donald langosy in a studio from the early days

For the past six Thursdays it has been been my pleasure to share the words and images of painter Donald Langosy. In collaboration with his daughter, he produced a unique 14-page memoir visually chronicling his evolution as an artist. I was allowed to share that memoir on this blog interspersed with additional words and images by Langosy.

Last Thursday’s post – story of my art – shakespeare and the joy of being, revealed that Mr. Langosy was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 2003. Has it affected how he expresses himself as an artist? Of course. But decrease in mobility and even fine motor skills has in no way decreased his creativity or even his productivity. As he has stated he does not allow MS into his studio, but he has welcomed visitors on occasion.

donald langosy in the studio present day

donald langosy still in the studio present day

I have been lucky enough to sit in his space and at his side and see his works-in-progress upon the easel, the canvases stacked against the wall, his sculptures tucked in high nooks, and what I especially love (and I tell him each time) the books, the books, the books, on so many different subjects, collected over the years! And no matter how crammed the space becomes with paintings and books and new technologies to enable him in his work, there is always space for the grandchildren.

grandchildren in the studio

grandchildren in the studio

Below are a few more images. Please enjoy this virtual peek inside the studio, present and past, of Donald Langosy.

Photos provided by Zoe Langosy.

View The Story of My Art: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6.

View four decades of Langosy’s work at http://www.donald.langosy.net/

See what’s current on Langosy’s Facebook page.

His contact: Zoe Langosy at zlangosy@me.com.

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artwork by asher discala, image courtesy of jeffrey nowlin

artwork by asher discala, image courtesy of jeffrey nowlin

One of the great pleasures of the past year has been joining the Steering Committee of the Riverside Arts Group and working alongside creative people like Jeffrey Nowlin, a painter, sculptor and mixed media artist. He is curating a July exhibit at the Riverside Gallery. The theme will be Flora+Fauna.

Nowlin says, “the show is a celebration not only of the diversity and beauty of our natural world, but the diversity of visual aesthetics. All of the artists that I have on the roster will be contributing widely differing works. I think this will be a great mix.”

Tentative date for the reception is Sunday August 7th, 3:00-5:00 PM. Location will be the Riverside Gallery located in the Cambridge Community Center. Stay tuned for further details! Meanwhile here’s a sneak peek at the work of several participating artists including Nowlin whose work you can also view at http://jeffreynowlin.weebly.com/

 

artwork by carol galayda, image courtesy of jeffrey nowlin

artwork by carol galayda, image courtesy of jeffrey nowlin

 

artwork by jeffrey nowlin, courtesy of artist

artwork by jeffrey nowlin, image courtesy of artist

 

artwork by jeffrey nowlin, image courtesy of artist

artwork by jeffrey nowlin, image courtesy of artist

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detail from isle of prospero by langosy

detail from isle of prospero by langosy

Editorial note: Throughout this unique sharing of his life as an artist, Mr. Langosy has focused on the influence of poets like Ezra Pound, painters like Titian, and underscoring everything, the influence of his muse, Elizabeth. In the following pages, he describes and depicts the influence of Shakespeare. But in the 1990s something else also affected his artistic journey.

“… my mobility inexplicably became impaired. As I gradually lost the ability to walk and became increasingly fatigued, I was no longer able to pursue connections in the art world or mount exhibits as I had in the past. I was told that my disability had psychiatric origins and that I would walk again when I was ready to do so. Over time, my paintings became as small as my housebound universe, sometimes shrinking to the size of a postage stamp. In October 2003, I collapsed and was taken to a hospital, where I was finally diagnosed with secondary progressive multiple sclerosis. Once I knew that I wasn’t crazy after all and began targeted treatments … I am convinced that a huge factor in my remission was my decision to not allow MS to enter my studio.”

And now …

View preceding episodes in The Story of My Art: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

View four decades of his work at http://www.donald.langosy.net/

See what’s current, as well as wonderful old photos of the artist at work, via Langosy’s Facebook page.

His contact: Zoe Langosy at zlangosy@me.com.

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Previously in The Story of My Art: I am a Baroque artist

And now …

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