Monday, June 30, 2014

My Fathers Day Date At The Delaware Art Museum.

Every once in awhile I feel the need for a day spent just with me; an "Artistic Date With Myself."

This recent Fathers Day was one of those days. I headed off into a sunny morning to first of all have breakfast at "Hanks Place," in Chadds Ford, the heart of Wyeth country. One of my cherished memories is having had a conversation with Andy himself, and an introduction to his muse, Helga, at Hanks.

I had decided most of this day was going to be spent wandering the galleries of the Delaware Art Museum, in Wilmington. I had an hour to kill before they opened at noon, so I stood in the shade and drew this bronze guy, the "Crying Giant". If he could stand he would be about 30 feet tall. Imposing, but he is a gentle giant.As I drew I truly felt empathy with him, and even more so when I read the sculptor, Tom Otterness, had created him in response to the 911 events.

I constantly remind my students painting and drawing is, first of all, about "shapes." And of course that is even more so when creating sculpture. The "positive" shapes are usually the subject itself, but equally important are the "negative" shapes, the spaces surrounding the subject...or in the case of three-dimensional sculpture, the spaces that weave in and around the art. The beauty of sculpture is those positive and negative shapes/spaces change as we move around the piece. This wonderful pile of  geometric shapes is welded Cor-Ten steel with a beautiful weathered patina, about 25 feet tall.

Once inside the museum I almost immediately encountered, and fell in love with, this elegant female named "Ruth."Ruth is a life-size pearly white sculpture carved from marble by her creator, Randolf Rogers. The actual title of this piece is "Ruth Gleaning," referring to Ruth from the Old Testament.

One of the reasons I wanted to visit this gem of a museum is because of the incredible collection of  works of American Illustrators. There are many wonderful images by Howard Pyle, considered to be the "Father" of American Illustration. N.C. Wyeth, patriarch of the Wyeth clan of artists,was one of Pyle's most famous students.  

In total contrast was this wondrous and captivating piece by Tony Oursler, "Sybil and Me."
Projected onto an eighteen inch ball is a very detailed video, a closeup of an eye, wrinkles, eyeball and eyelashes subtly moving, as the artist continually watches the 1976 film, "Sybil." Although I did not capture it in this sketch, if one focuses on the eye, you can see vague images of the film. Erie, surreal,
and I thought wonderfully creative.  I am constantly dazzled by my fellow artists.

When the museum closed I headed for one of my favorite places to draw, eat, sip a Manhattan, and end this date with me. "Buckley's Tavern", in Centerville. has long been a favorite hangout for Wilmington locals.

I could not resist one final stop; one more indulgence, before heading back to Bala Cynwyd.
Just as they are at "Hanks," lines are always long at this ice cream stand on Rt. 202.

When I finally got home I was greeted by our next President, Ms. Hillary. My son had given her to me the night before as his gift.. All in all a most enjoyable way to spend, and end, this Father's day.  

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Some Kids Just Don't Get Enough Lovin' From Their Pappys.

In the old days of the Wild West a man's sons often went astray.

Frank and Jessie James had a lust for robbing trains and stagecoaches.

Before Wyatt Earp and his brother Virgil got street cred as Deputy U.S, Marshals
at the gunfight at the OK Coral, they and their brothers were constantly being run out of towns and territories
for causing commotion amongst the local populace.

The Youngers took rowdiness to a new extreme, spitting in public places, causing commotion day and night, and were rumored to be cavorting  with wimmin of questionable moral fiber at every opportunity.

The Dalton boys were just a downright nasty bunch who actually killed people. Eventually citizens formed Vigilante groups, taking the law into their own hands. Here are the Daltons, laid out for public display after a gunfight that concluded with their demise.  One would hope; "Lesson Learned."

For some reason Historians of the old west have overlooked the once infamous "Ternay Boys," varmints
in their own right. Rumor has it the sons, Mason, Will, and Pierce, were encouraged by the family Patriarch, "Wild Bill," (center above) to live life to the fullest and savor every moment, whether sad or yoyous, to celebrate the unique qualities of their fellow humans, and to not take crap from anybody.
Happy Father's Day.