Monday, May 14, 2012

Domestic Bliss

William Merritt Chase, The Ring Toss (1896)

Back in its heyday, this was the kind of the painting that the Terra Museum used to show in special exhibits organized around themes in American art.

Winslow Homer,"Crack the Whip" (detail, 1872)

Ah -- those golden days, back when it was OK for high art to be about happy domestic life.

John Singer Sargent "Carnation Lily, Lily, Rose" (1886)

And it was OK to depict happy children, which though still a ever-popular subject for middle-brow art and children's books, hardly makes the kind of critical commentary about the world required of contemporary art.

Henri Matisse, Pianist and Checker Players (1924)

Although this theme was not rejected by the early modernists.

Stephen Gjertson,"Bedtime Story", 1994

It's difficult for the re-born techniques of Classical Realism to make this subject feel less than ponderous, but this painting does feel gentle with a touch of magic and wonder.

But the hilarity of childhood seems perfectly suited for the re-born techniques of early Modernism as practiced by Carly Michele Silverman , a young artist still in her twenties.

Her paintings are so joyful, I couldn't stop laughing along with them

They seem so distant from any kind of critical dialogue concerning contemporary life, I couldn't believe she ever got an M.F.A..

But indeed, she's a recent graduate from the S.A.I.C..

So, perhaps I'm missing something.

But what's this erotic scene doing in the children's party?

It seems as if she quit working on it before she figured out where it was going.

Perhaps it was too distant from the world of childhood innocence with which she is so comfortable.


Blogger Marly said...

Luckily for Mr. Mountshang, life is full of exceptions! And more full lately than before...

July 04, 2012  

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