Eye Candy for Today: Max Klinger’s At the Gate

At the Gate (Am Thor), Max Klinger; etching and engraving
At the Gate (Am Thor), Max Klinger; etching and engraving (details)

At the Gate (Am Thor), Max Klinger; etching and engraving; roughy 18 x 12″ (45 x 31 cm). Link is to the impression the collection of the National Gallery, DC, which has both a downloadable and zoomable version of the image (and no longer requires an account to download high-res images). There is also a zoomable version on the Google Art Project.

Max Klinger was a German Symbolist artist active in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Though he was also a painter, Klinger was known primarily for his graphics in the form of etchings, drypoint, aquatint and engraving — sometimes combining multiple techniques in a single plate, as he did here.

This print is from a series titled A Love, Opus X, which he dedicated to Arnold Böcklin, a Swiss Symbolist by whom he was greatly influenced — to the point of doing a beautiful etching version of Böcklin’s famous painting Isle of the Dead.

 
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Oscar Droege

Oscar Droege, color woodblock prints
Oscar Droege, color woodblock prints

Color woodblock prints don’t get as much attention in Europe and the U.S. as they do in Japan, but there are adherents of the art who produce beautiful work.

Oscar Droege was a German printmaker and painter active in the early to mid 20th century. His prints are largely of landscapes, but also include ships, houses and other subjects.

His use of color is subtle, atmospheric and invites a contemplative appreciation of his work.

In contrast to many of the color woodblock print artists of 19th and 20th century Japan, a number of European and American artists working in the medium, including Droege, largely eschew the use of outline in favor of defining subjects directly as shapes of color.

[Via GurneyJourney]

 
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Mario Borgoni

Mario Borgoni posters and paintings
Mario Borgoni posters and paintings

Mario Borgoni was an Italian painter and illustrator active in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. He is noted in particular for his travel posters of beautiful tourist destinations like the Amalfi Coast, Capri, Sorrento and the Italian Rivera.

 
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Richard Schmid 1934-2021

Richard Schmid
Richard Schmid

I was saddened to learn of the death on Sunday of American artist Richard Schmid, one of the finest and most influential realist artists of the late 20th and early 21st centuries.

His paintings are veritable textbooks of color and value relationships, texture, brush handling, and the subtle power of edges in painting. Schmid was not only a formidable painter, but a hugely influential teacher; you can see his influence in the work of his students, their students and even those who have just known his work from afar.

Fortunately, Schmid has left a legacy of teaching materials — treasure troves of painting knowledge that are available to the rest of us. His book Alla Prima II: Everything I know About Painting – and More is the single best book on the art of painting of which I am aware. I learn something new every time I go through it. I have also found his instructional videos — particularly those on landscape painting — of great value. (Most outstanding for me is the second in his landscape series: June.)

If you are not well acquainted with his work, the official Richard Schmid website is a great place to start. You will find examples of his work not only in the Portfolio, but in the sections on Available Art, Lithographs and Books and Videos. (In the Books section, on the pages for the individual titles, look below the image of the cover for the “Preview This Item” tab.)

Unfortunately, the official website pulls up short of showing his work to best advantage in large images. For that, you may need to use a Bing or Google image search, with the parameters set to “Large” or “Extra Large” (see my recent article on image search). In this way you can view larger images of his work that have been reproduced by auction houses.

As much as I admire Schmid’s work as a portraitist and still life painter, it is his landscapes that have long captured my attention. Subtle, atmospheric and evocative, his landscapes are masterful examples of the power of suggestion in painting, convincing your eye that there is more there than is actually delineated. The published collection, The Landscapes is a visual treat, beautifully printed and at a marvelously large size (see my review here).

I haven’t yet gotten a copy of the new still life book, but I can’t imagine it is anything less than superb.

In all cases, I strongly recommend purchasing his books and videos direct from the official website. Not only will the proceeds go more directly to his family, but the materials are actually less expensive there than through third party sites like Amazon.

 
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Kris Parins

Kris Parins watercolor
Kris Parins watercolor

Kris Parins is a watercolor painter who is originally from Wisconsin, and now shares her time between a studio there and one in Florida.

Her bright, crisp watercolors reflect a love of the natural world as exemplified by both places as well as the play of light and shadow to be found in urban environments and still life objects.

Her approach varies, at times areas of color are abstracted to the point of giving the work a seirgraph-like appearance.

Her website portfolio is divided into ranges of subject matter. In addition, there is a section for prints, and a video in which she talks about her inspiration and process. The Articles section includes articles Parins has written for Watercolor Artist Magazine.

 
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Eye Candy for Today: Carl Thomsen’s Arranging Daffodils

Arranging Daffodils, Carl Thomsen, oil on canvas
Arranging Daffodils, Carl Thomsen, oil on canvas

Arranging Daffodils, Carl Thomsen; oil on canvas, roughly 16 x 12 inches (41 x 32 cm); link is to image file page on Wikimedia Commons, zoomable image on Bonham’s. (My assumption from the auction listing is that the painting is currently in a private collection.)

This 1894 painting by Danish artist Carl Thomsen is a perfect image of bringing spring indoors. The vase of blossoms and the young woman and her white dress are illuminated highlights in the dark room, giving a feeling of the bright promise of spring making an advance into the darkness of fading winter.

Thomsen’s painterly approach makes the bright subjects stand out even more against the almost flat background.

 
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