|Artist panel in front of Parrish's "Cycle of Terror and Tragedy: Sept 11"|
Oh, lots of people! As with any "movement" there are conflicting points of view... mainly from proponents of other movements. And those conflicting opinions can sometimes strike one as a bit self-serving, IMHO. You've heard it before: my "xxx" is newer/elite-er/holier than yours. My favorite remarks came from Sadie Valeri who compared art to music and suggested that fine art should be acknowledged, appreciated and peacefully coexist in the way that music does. No one tells Joshua Bell that his style is "old" and he should embrace hip hop because it's "newer" aka better. Point made.
Sadie also won me over describing her personal artistic journey which included being disillusioned by her acclaimed art school (Rhode Island School of Design!!!) that required classical drawing in admission portfolios and then ignored classical art instruction in favor of ...oh, let's say the emperors new clothes (oops, that's me sounding derisive of modern art - just my personal opinion, folks).
This group has christened it's style of painting "Post Contemporary." Love the work. Questioning the moniker. It's meant to differentiate from "modern" art (post-modernism was already taken). But they tend to shorten it to "Po-Co" which in Spanish means "little" or "not much." And believe me, their work is definitely NOT "not much".
|Post Contemporary Art by panelists Richard Thomas Scott (l), Tony Curanaj (c), Sadie Valeri (r) © the artists|
While I was there I enjoyed the rest of the museum's collection, specializing in American art. Exhibits are sometimes organized by style rather than date making it all the more interesting. On the wall below they've grouped master trompe l'oeil work by John Haberle with today's artist Michael Theise. It's part of their Appropriation and Inspiration series which pairs contemporary work with its historical counterpart from the permanent collection. I love this perspective.
|Michael Theise's Madame X Desk Blotter, l. John Haberle's Time and Eternity, r.|
Kudos to NBMAA for their recognition and support of realist artists working today! If you haven't been, it's worth the trip. This is a wonderfully intimate museum, as close as NYC ...and parking is free. Plus they host gallery crawls with Happy Hours! More importantly, they provide art education programs for home schooled children - so valuable in a time when art education has been pared down or eliminated altogether. This is a museum worthy of support!
If you'd like to read more about classical (or classic) realism there is an interesting three part series on the Oil Painters of America blog, which is a source of info self-described as "Dedicated to the Preservation of Representational Art".
Thanks for wandering this corner of the art world with me.