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April 28, 2014

Two Exhibit Visits

When I go to my class at Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT), I can see some of the student exhibits this month.  There is currently an extraordinary bird exhibit done by first year students.  Pairs of students selected a type of bird, studied it in depth and then recreated the bird on a very large mannequin, using thousands of feathers.  I LOVED the flamingo and took approximately 5 minutes to sketch it walking through the exhibit on my way to class.  The week before I took a photo of it and I've posted that here too.

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There are about 20 enormous birds in the exhibit - such creativity!! 

 

Saturday morning I read about the opening of a New York City exhibit on ArtDaily.org.  This is a wonderful daily news site about exhibits opening in museums and galleries around the world - with a daily short educational video as well.   

Mnuchin Gallery at 45 E. 78th St. currently has an amazing exhibit of approximately 30 20th Century bronzes by all of the big names of contemporary art ("Bronze in the 20th Century: Casting Modernity" April 24-June 7, 2014).  None of these large pieces were obviously for sale - many came from museums and private collectors.  My husband and I thoroughly enjoyed the installation in this magnificent townhouse gallery and I sketched two sculptures and painted them when I returned home. 

MAX ERNST  King Playing With His Queen

GERMAINE RICHIER  Mantis

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April 18, 2014

Picasso and Humpty Dumpty

This morning I went to Christies Auction House for the viewing of the upcoming auction items.  It is a great way to see art that is rarely on display since it usually goes from one private owner to another.  I went to see the upcoming exhibit of Prints and Multiples, but chose to draw a Picasso ceramic to remember my visit.  This is my photo of the 16.5" diameter plate.

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I love the simplicity of Picasso's lines and frequently copy them trying very hard to embed his techniques in my brain.  My drawing was done with a Pentel Pocket Brush Pen.

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 I forgot that there were several hundred artist eggs placed around New York City and found dozens of them displayed around the Rockefeller Center Skating Rink as I walked to Christies.  The "Big Easter Egg Hunt" in NYC is sponsored by Faberge, and the artists range from the famous, i.e. Jeff Koons to local public schools.  Here is my favorite egg.  

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It was done by the Prince's Drawing School and is signed by Prince William and Princess Kate. As I type this, the current auction bid for Humpty Dumpty is $16,000.

 

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April 11, 2014

Recent Sketchbook Pages

My oldest grandson was singing in the Middleschool Choral Festival on Wednesday.  I arrived early and listened to each individual school practice and sketched the center altar in the church they were using for the concert.  I sketched in pencil, then Tombow black marker, and then added water with my waterbrush.

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Yesterday I went to see two exhibits with my friends Bendicte and Pat.  There is an amazing exhibit at Neue Galerie on Degenerate Art as designated by the Nazis and featured in Munich in an exhibit of the same name right before WWII. 

http://www.neuegalerie.org/content/degenerate-art-attack-modern-art-nazi-germany-1937 

Many of the works shown at Neue are done by my favorite German artists.  I sketched a sculpture by Ernst Barlach called  "The Reader."  It was considered "degenerate" because of the book which they considered the sign of an intellectual!

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On our walk up Madison Ave to lunch I found this beautiful bloom at the top of a trash can and took it to paint during while we ate.

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We spent the afternoon at the National Academy Museum seeing an exhibit by the famous Swedish Artist Anders Zorn.  His etchings and watercolors were brilliant and I'm posting photos, not sketches - which would have been impossible. 

http://www.nationalacademy.org/anders-zorn-swedens-master-painter/ 

A Zorn Watercolor (from my photo):  This also appears in the link I included.

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A Zorn Etching:

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April 7, 2014

Central Park Sketching and Art Meetup Group

Yesterday we had a gorgeous day for outdoor sketching and our group met at Belvedere Castle in Central Park.  We had approximately 45 minutes to move to location, sketch, paint, and then gather to show our sketches.  Over 3 hours we shifted position 3 times and here are my 3 sketchbook pages.

Belvedere Castle - from the rocks overlooking Turtle Pond.  I sat in bright sunlight and listened to tourists search for the turtles - both swimming and sunning themselves below us.

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Instead of working more on my castle drawing, I sketched and painted another member of our group during the 2nd session.  She had beautiful hair which fell naturally, covering her face while she was drawing.  But I could always see the frame of her red glasses.

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We moved to The Shakespeare Garden for our 3rd session and I fought with a painting of a very small purple flower - one of the few that were blooming.   I couldn't capture the exact purple color or show the variation from intense color at the ends of each petal to white in the center.  I tortured these 2 small blooms - and finally said - "I did my best and have lots more to learn."

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February 28, 2014

Catching Up

There is a break this week in our lessons in the Studying Under the Masters course, so I decided to post information about my other Winter activities.

1.  Our grandchildren:  We took 8 year old Robbie and 4 year old Zach to the Museum of Modern Art last week to listen to the Children's audioguide.  The museum has short, interesting commentaries for about 15 of their major art works in the permanent collection.  Here they are listening to the commentary about Matisse's painting The Piano Lesson.  All of our grandchildren love to do this.

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2.  Surface Design:  This semester I'm taking a surface design class at Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) - fifteen 4 hour lab sessions using dye to paint on silk.  I have some experience with these techniques, but thought it would be fun to study with an artist from FIT. 

Here is a watercolor painting of one of 6 butterflies that I "drew" with gutta and water soluble resists on silk and painted with Sennelier dyes.   I also painted it as a watercolor so I would have an entry in my daily art journal. 

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3.  Family Research:   I signed up for Family History Writing Month in February and decided to write a story  (at least 250 words per day) about my Great-great-great-great grandmother Christina Wampler.  She was kidnapped by the Delaware Indians in Lancaster Co. PA in 1757, during the French-Indian War, and was returned with 206 captives to Carlisle PA in 1764.  The British took 1500 soldiers to the Ohio Valley to force the Delaware, Shawnee, and Mingo Indians to sign a peace treaty and return their captives.  Her kidnapping and return were both reported in the PA Gazette (Benjamin Franklin, editor) and here is part of the handwritten captive list that I obtained from the Clements Rare Manuscript Library at the University of Michigan.

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She is #40 on this scanned portion of the list and was returned with one shirt, 1 legging, 1 shoe pack and 1 blanket.  I don't know her age when she was kidnapped, but the fact that she was able to tell soldiers her full name after living with the Indians for 7 years and speaking their language, makes me assume that she was probably older than 4-5 years.  Notice a captive named Flat Nose right below her - this is obviously a name given by the Indians.  There are also captives listed with only their first names.  She married Peter Graybeal, had a large family, lived in Ashe Co, NC and died in Jackson Co. Ohio.

I'm hoping that someone with more information about her may find this entry in a Google Search.  I exchange information with other Graybeal descendants, but there is so much more to learn.