Changes in Art in the Last One Hundred Years
EARLY IN THE 1900s:
As an example of an artist in the late 1800's, early 1900s , Childe Hassam is unparelled in productivity and also, besides being one of the most fecund American artists, he is the one who brought Impressionism from the Continent to the United States. Childe Hassam was born in Wochester, Massachusetts, an American through and through. He was relatively untutored in art, though he had a great natural gift, and he, early in his career, made a living of drawing line art for newspaper advertisements.
As his art became more popular and more lucrative, and he was a recognized American painter, he became an important member of the American Society of Artists. It was his influence that brought Impressionism to the United States: before that, American art was distinguished from European art by having a much more realistic, less fuzzy and Impressionistic, style of brushwork, as well as recognizing naïve or native, untutored, less stylized artists. The subject, "Lumbering", is typical of American art of that period, it being a sort of raw, down-to-earth, outdoors-type subject. Though he gave it "the Monet treatment", he didn't really prettify his subject.
I do love his artwork. It's an historical record of America in the late 1800's, early 1900s; it's an entirely unspoiled America. I find it beautiful, not plebeian or bland. I could look at this kind of picture, for hours. And that's what pictures were, back then. The whole idea of painting a picture, of hanging it on the wall, was to give people something to look at, something to take them away from their present reality; something they could look at for hours.
Now we have...
Roger Brown was an American artist who was born in Hamilton, Alabama in 1941. He died in 1997, at the age of 56. His art is "postmodern", and reverts to being representational, in that respect. I respect his work, though I don't like it. And, though I don't like it, at least I understand the message he's sending. His work is meant to be accessible to everyone. I admire that attribute of his work.
Mr. Brown studied at the Art Institute in Chicago. His work sometimes is captioned, like a comic book, and has that sort of simple, accessible sincerity. His work is highly respected by the experts and collected by museums; he was kind enough to donate his three homes and all of his eclectic collection of art and objects to the School of the Art Institute of Chicago on his death.
The above picture is by John Appleton Brown, who was born in Newburyport, Massachusetts in 1844, and died in 1902 The title of the picture is "New England Landscape", and I believe it was painted towards the end of Mr. Brown's career.
I love this painting; it's another one that I could just sink in to, just look at it for hours and hours.
It takes us back to a much gentler era; America was just so very beautiful then. I've visited parts of New England that remind me very much of this picture, that are still so very much unspoiled and full of natural beauty.
John Appleton Brown, also known as Appleton Brown, handled the colors of his paintings so delicately; poetically, almost. You can see the changing lights of the day in his colors.
Mr. Brown studied in both America and Paris, and I can see something Parisian in his handling of the landscape. He had a studio in New York, in the late 1800's and turn of the century, and his last picture was exhibited at the National Academy in 1902.
Leonard Koscianski was born in Cleveland, Ohio, in 1952. He studied with Buckminster Fuller, among others, and received both a Bachelor's Degree (from the Cleveland Institute of Art) and a Master's Degree (from the University of California) in Fine Art.
Mr. Koscianski has received many awards and kudos for his art; MOMA (the Metropolitan Museum of Modern Art) exhibits his works, among other museums. He has received many awards for his art.
Once again, though I can admire and appreciate Mr. Koscianski's obvious and inherent artistry, I don't really like his art. It has its own kind of beauty; unfortunately for me, it isn't really my kind of beauty.
It reminds me very much of cinematic anime; that is not necessarily a BAD thing, but I wouldn't want it hanging on my wall. That type of art; indeed most of post-modern art, seems to me to have value in passing, sort of shock value, so to speak. It catches the eye.
I think that's the big difference. We are such a mobile society now; we move on so quickly. Our art has accommodate this trend.
I must say; I appreciate the former way of looking at art, at painting, as something that must last; something to be contemplated endlessly and repeatedly; something whose value and beauty stands up to the test of time.