Two days until show time…..

Today a small band of hard working women descended on Froggwell to take on the task of hanging paintings, placing sculptures, and compiling the documentation for putting on this exhibition.

It is not unlike herding cats to prepare for a group show of artists from across the country.

"Don't even THINK of telling me what to do."

“Don’t even THINK of telling me what to do.”

Creating an art show is a group effort, with creative input on numerous fronts.  Each year as I prepare for this show, my mind reels: “What was I thinking? This is exhausting…we’ll never get everything done in time and nothing will look good together…” And then, all the work is on the wall and It.  Looks.  Magnificent.  Breathtaking even.

But before the glory, chaos reigns. Here are a few pictures of the work in progress….

Where will we put everything?

Where will we put everything? Hey! Is that a Diebenkorn?

Is there even a wall this big? (the answer? no)

Is there even a wall this big? (the answer? no)

I think I need to take a nap....

I think I need to take a nap….

Tune in tomorrow, for photos of the installed show, but right now, here are several more offerings of some of the wonderful paintings by our wonderful artists:

In the style of Charles Burchfield by Gail Gwinn

In the style of Charles Burchfield by Gail Gwinn

Here’s what Gail had to say about this painting:

Here’s my story and I’m sticking to it…

In 1916, Charles Burchfield was completing his final year at the Cleveland School of Art when he painted “Poplars in May.”   His reputation as a landscape painter and watercolorist was growing.  It didn’t take long to find a buyer for this painting when it was first exhibited.  After the sale, many people came up to Mr. Burchfield and said to him if only that  painting hadn’t sold…  So, not one to miss an opportunity, he painted another one just like it and titled it “Between Two Poplars.” After contacting everyone who had expressed an interest in the first painting, he had no buyers for the second one!  He put it in storage until a great grand-daughter recently discovered it under a bed in her grandmother’s house.  She most graciously sent Charles Burchfield’s forgery of his own work to be included in the 2013 Exhibition of Forgeries at Froggwell.  For more information about Charles Burchfield go to The Burchfield Penney Art Center in Buffalo NY, www.burchfieldpenney.org

Another of my favorite Italian painters is Caravaggio, and it just so happens that one turned up for the show!

As luck would have it, a Caravaggio of Jerome Before he Was a Saint tuned up....

As luck would have it, a Caravaggio of Jerome Before he Was a Saint tuned up….

We are so fortunate that art historian Rene Flynn-Federspiel shared this painting and the story with us:

“Before Jerome Became a Saint” by Caravaggio

In this study, dated from 1600, for his painting of St Jerome, doctor of the Church and renowned bossypants, Caravaggio uses as model his memory of his father, Fermo, who died of the plague when the artist was 6.  Fermo was a “magister”, a vague term that indicated various activities, from artist to master builder to herbalist and pothead, as we see here.  This study is one of several works left behind in the artist’s Roman studio in 1606 when he had to flee to avoid a prison sentence resulting from an incident in which he caused grievous bodily harm to a fellow Roman by striking him with a plate (presumably large) of artichokes.  This painting, in exceptional condition, was hidden among many valuable but embarassing works of art in the Vatican collection until it was presented in 1985 by the Pope to Sister Wendy Beckett* to thank her for her discretion in several unfortunate examples of human failing involving the Church hierarchy.  It came to light again only in recent times when Sister Wendy was moved from her Caravan to a Mobile Home on the grounds of a Carmelite Monastery in Fordham, England.  She had been using the painting as a temporary window blind in the small WC portion of her Caravan.  We are so grateful to her for maintaining it in such wonderful condition and allowing us to exhibit it here at the Froggwell Cultural Institute, on South Whidbey Island, it’s spiritual home.

*Sister Wendy Beckett is a British hermit and consecrated virgin who became well known in the 1990s when she presented a series of documentaries for the BBC on the history of art.

Thank you Rene and Gail for these very…um…interesting glimpses into the lives of renowned artists.

More tomorrow!

Through this passage, lies magic....

Through this passage, lies magic….

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About Bob T Panda

I am just your average talking panda. I enjoy bamboo, sleeping... oh, did I say I enjoy bamboo? what about sleeping. And of course, don't forget the cuppycakes!
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