Archive for March 15th, 2012

He draws earth as another might draw the exciting and desirable strong body of a man or woman.  His earth is essentially a naked savage earth living out of doors, not so much a cruel and terrifying savage as a wild and free one.

–Grant H. Code on the work of Rockwell Kent


I’ve written about my admiration for the work of Rockwell Kent here in the past, about how his landscapes have a mystic feel, seeming more than mere depictions of this world.  There is an existential aura about them so that when I look at them there seems to be  an added layer of mood and emotion.  It reminds me of the paintings of Edward Hopper that have that peculiar feeling that hints at more than the scene depicts. 

Some of my favorite pieces from Kent are his Greenland paintings, done during the several extended periods that he spent there during the late 1920’s and 30″s.  The colors are beautiful and clear with subtle gradation in the sky that gives it a light and free feel with massive icebergs and mountain faces providing a wonderful counterweight.  As the writer Grant Code wrote above in 1937, Kent  depicts a landscape that is wild and free, not a cruel and terrifying savage.  It’s just spectacular work that has an ethereal air that I can only hope for in my own work. 


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