Dennis McGonagle has been painting landscapes and murals in Whittier, California since 1975. You can see more of his work at his website: http://www.mcgonaglestudio.com
In the artist’s own words:
“I call this painting Golden Time because it is being painted in the late afternoon when the last rays of the sun come dancing across the lawn. It’s a wonderful time to paint a neighborhood scene. The neighbors are out walking their babies and dogs. Billowing clouds come drifting by. A cool breeze blows the leaves down the street.
I like the sensory bombardment that comes when I do plein air painting. The shifting light, the random sounds coming from houses and cars, the conversations with people that pass by on the sidewalk. All of these elements find their way into the painting.
The painting itself is like a visual diary, a series of moments. I notice something different in the landscape every time I come there. One day it will be the play of light on a fence, the next day I will focus on the color contrast between bricks and grass.
This is the first in a series of landscapes I have planned for Whittier. For inspiration, I am looking to George Bellows, John Sloan, and the Ashcan School. I am also mixing in the American Scene paintings of Edward Hopper and Charles Burchfield for good measure.
I am guided by the advice of James Doolin for the composition, who said, “My paintings need to be strong on the abstract level, clear on the descriptive level, and mysterious on the narrative level.”
Vicki Schramm, a local Whittier artist, has been painting for decades. She has recently retired from 31 years of teaching elementry school and now her art is becoming more of a focus. The following two plein-aire paintings are a sample of her work.
“For several summer mornings I joined other artist friends for a plein air painting time in the Whittier hills near the Arroyo Pescadero trail head. We worked at this site four different mornings.
Later, in my studio, I changed the painting to show more back-light to emphasize the shape of the tree which had attracted my attention when I first started to sketch this site.
I enjoyed the plein air experience, especially spending the time painting with my artist friends. They helped me notice things in the environment that I might have overlooked if I had painted alone on location.”
“Late one evening, I was standing in the Whittier hills watching the sunset, when I noticed the shape of a eucalyptus tree with the city lights of Long Beach far in the distance. I returned the next evening with my camera determined to capture that beautiful sight. What I ended up with was a disappointing photo with lots of shadows that showed no details and did not represent what I felt about the view.
I worked on this painting in my studio, recalling from my memory what I loved about the scene.”
Both paintings are:
Acrylic on canvas
24 x 18 inches
You can contact Vicki Schramm at: Vicki.Schramm@WhittierArtists.com
For more imformation, please visit this artist’s website at: http://www.WhittierArtists.com/VickiSchramm
Don’t miss Holly Overin and Glen Eisner’s current show at the Ruth B. Shannon Center for the Performing Arts Lobby. The show ends July 31, 2009. Husband and wife team, Holly Overin and Glen Eisner present a chronology of their ‘en plein aire’, (in open air) paintings created on site.
The Ruth B. Shannon Center for the Performing Arts can be found at 6760 Painter Avenue, Whittier, 90601. (NW corner of Philadelphia)
The lobby is open Tues –Fri 10am to 5pm
Madi Comfort, the late Whittier artist, singer, dancer and actress, was known for performing with Duke Ellington’s band in the early 1950’s. Some of her artwork is currently on display at the California African American Museum in a group show entitled: ‘Inside My Head: Intuitive Artists of Arfican Descent’. The CAAM is located in Exposition Park in Los Angeles. The show runs from May 7th through September 27th.
Inside My Head is a showcase of work by 32 contemporary artists of African decent who have developed a mature style in an intuitive manner. The exhibition explores pure artistic creativity and validates the connection to ethnic-specific traditions and ways of doing. The exhibition includes paintings, sculptures, collages, assemblages, photographs, videos, dolls, garments and jewelry.
California African American Museum Website: http://www.caamuseum.org/
This blog is intended to feature new artwork added to the WhittierArtists.com site. I hope to showcase one piece of artwork each week. Also, I hope to move my list of current and local Whittier Art shows to this blog. Enjoy!