I am loving the holidays and time spent with my family. My daughter Audrey (20 yr) is home from college. My son Alex (17 yr)has planned many of our family activities including a wonderful visit to the St. Louis Art Museum to see the special exhibit Action Abstraction. If you live in St. Louis you have until January 11 to see it. It's traveling around the country, so look for it in a city near you.
I love studies in color...and especially abstract art. I can't put in words what it means to me, but it elicits reactions in my soul like when I listen to inspiring music.
I was most moved by Grace Hartigan's work, her story and her art.
Like most women and blacks in the 50s, she had to fight hard for recognition of her work. Hartigan ran in circles of those better known Abstract Expressionists like Pollock and de Kooning. She broke through a glass ceiling in the art world as the only woman represented among 17 artists in the prestigious exhibit "New American Painting" sent by MOMA to Europe to communicate that New York had trumped Paris as the capital of modern art.
I am drawn to Hartigan's use of bold brush strokes and saturated splashes of color.
Bold, abstract, vivid and color infused...I can't get enough of it!
My favorite Hartigan painting is Summer Street (above). Can you make out the woman from the 50s shopping in the street? It took me a bit, but I found her. And do you see the watermelon? What else do you see in the busy summer street? What color and light of summer do you recognize? What time of day does it look like? Are there buildings around and if so, how are they recognized in the painting? Do you see yourself in a street like this?
I wish I could pluck Summer Street off the exhibit wall and place it in Heather's home! Perfect for her piano room (you'll see the reveal of Heather's piano room later on my blog). It would also look great in the 10th Street Lobby (also stay tuned for that reveal.)
I also loved New England in October (below).
Grace Hartigan quietly passed away in November this year. Though she faded from prominence years ago, I am grateful her work lives on in this exhibit.