When Meg first told me about her idea for this blog -- that we should all pick one favorite painting hanging in the gallery right now -- I balked, "I can't do that! It's like picking a favorite child!". In fact, it is a painfully hard exercise to try and narrow down all my favorites to one painting, and I'm not sure that I am capable. If they're all really small, can I please have three? If so, they would be (I know I'm bending the rules, but I can't help it!) :
Nancy Franke’s In the Spotlight, oil on canvas, 10 x 10”
For me, this painting is perfection. It is pure magic. The composition is so simple yet so powerful and it is painted with Nancy Franke's signature confidence. There is something so elegant about the patrician pear, standing tall, and ever so protective of the little apple next to it. You can’t help but think of it as a happy little couple. And I love the roughness of the paint, and the sketchiness of the background. Of course, the translucent quality of the color is also exquisite. I absolutely love this painting and would never ever tire of looking at it.
Amy Dixon’s On the Horizon, oil on board, 6 x 6”
I was out of town when this one arrived, and my reaction was, “Whoa, this is fabulous!,” when I saw it in real life. I love a little painting that carries a big punch, and that is exactly what this one does. Evocative, mysterious, romantic and so beautiful. Again, I’d never tire. (And by the way, wouldn't it look great with Nancy’s In the Spotlight!)
And just to sneak in one more little jewel: this is another diminutive painting that I just picked up from our artist Andree Thobaty, for our Bastille Day show. It’s a study of India Ink and ochre powder from the ground in Provence.
Andree Thobaty, Encre de Chine, 5 x 5”
She did a series of 10, and I would like to own four of them and hang them as a wall in my new dream apartment (when I get it!). Unfortunately, Meg and I have this annoying rule that we need to sell paintings to clients before we can buy them for ourselves. Oh well … I guess that’s why we have a gallery! So we can enjoy them from 9 to 5, until they sell, and then we can have new favorites to blog about!
I find myself falling head over heels about once a week here at the gallery. What's got me smitten right now is Amy Dixon's By The Window. The figure is elegant and sexy and I love the way Amy has light falling over the angular parts of the body. The composition is beautiful - my eye is drawn instantly to the figure, but the architectural planes on the right side of the canvas also pull me in. The painting is tonally balanced with light and dark playing off one another. And, finally, what initially drew me to this painting is the glorious palette of soothing, calm and clear colors.
I had a little fun on the computer when I was thinking about this painting and wondered how it would look placed in different settings (thanks to House Beautiful for their always gorgeous images).
If Ann can have three favorites, then I can have two! My runner-up this week is Onyeka Ibe's Village In the Mist. It's a simple, strong painting that appeals to my "less-is-more" aesthetic. I love the symmetrical shapes of the houses and the powerful brushstrokes that compose the background.
Doug Foltz’s But I’ve Been Wrong Before, oil on canvas, 30 x 48”
There is something so calm and peaceful about this painting that can take you out of a hurried and hectic moment and transport you to a place and time when your world was defined by the beauty of the backlit horizon and the absence of any pressures other than the joy of feeling the waves gently lapping at your feet with the promise of a soothing and tranquilizing sail to explore the promise of a new adventure.
(Oh yes, and how often do you hear a man say, much less see in writing, "But I've been wrong before." I'm sure his lovely wife Alecia helped him with the title.)
Silke Henkel-Wallace’s Interieur I, oil on canvas, 54 x 54”
I love Silke’s Interieur I for so many reasons. I love it because of the beautiful color palette and the oh-so French subject of a beautiful lustre (chandelier). I am obsessed with lighting and always have room in my valise for a sconce or two from France. I also love the juxtaposition of such an elegant subject; the chandelier and piano with bold, edgy brushstrokes and dripping paint.
Pascal Bouterin's Le Grand Canal, oil on board, 30 x 60”
I’ve loved this painting from the first moment it entered the gallery. The colors and texture lend the piece amazing depth and energy that really capture the viewer and draw you in. By layering similarly toned colors, Pascal creates a seamless sea and sky, while Venice seems to float in between. When approaching the city of Venice via a water taxi, this is exactly the illusion that appears- a majestic floating city.
This painting has a strong horizontal element that allows it to hold its own on any wall, no matter the scale of the room or furniture. Yet at the same time, the soft, almost feminine color palette gives the painting a quiet serenity that make it ideal for any room in your home, including a bedroom. I’m a lover of all things Italian, so the fact that this is the Grand Canal in Venice makes it all the sweeter!
This is my favorite painting hanging in the gallery right now. It has a fantastic, striking composition with a sophisticated, monochromatic color palette. I imagine this painting hanging in a fabulous cream bedroom with dark wood furniture to create an elegant beauty.
We hope you'll stop by the gallery and let us know which painting is your favorite! (And don't worry if you can't pick just one- it's a difficult task, to be sure)