What has always drawn me into a picture is the sense of being there; being pulled in so one feels the space. Often in the work there are no figures and the painting has a story. The viewer hopefully becomes the figure, the eyes, the receiver. If that happens I’m happy.
It often happens for me looking at work by A. Wyeth, Rockwell Kent, Harald Sohlberg and Edvard Munch. Their skills and deep involvement with their work are vastly beyond my novice efforts, but we communicate. When Kent represents an old Eskimo woman telling a story through dance one can be there; lit by oil lamps, uncomfortable with her madness, snow surrounding the dwelling. My brother, an artist in his way, said “” lots of artists can paint barns, but Wyeth can paint a barn you don’t want to go in!” Munch takes one to a different level in technique, dragging one into the room with the “Sick Child”. Sohlberg captures summer and winter nights that are for me Scandinavia; I’m there.
My. hope is to communicate some of that sense of being in the paintings. They come from memory, from outside, and from photos. I like having a familiarity with the subject; I know New England and am comfortable painting it, Idaho mountains are home, Alaska still rocks the deck and Norway and Sweden are kind of home too,,,old shoes and comfortable.