By SJWNY, a Trail Mix Contributor
Art is personal. What speaks to one person is silent to another. There are two artists whose vision speaks to me: Mark Rothko (1903-1970) & Hans Holbein the Younger (1497-1543.) Rothko’s paintings speak with color, Holbein’s drawings with black on white.
Rothko is most famous for multiforms, blocks of colors on one canvas. He wrote of their “breath of life” & they do pulsate from within. I was struck quite young at the fact these paintings live. They evoke emotion, thought. Rothko was a troubled man who eventually committed suicide but he poured life into these artworks which project the complexity of life.
Hans Holbein the Younger is best known as the Court Painter to Henry VIII of England. Remember the oversize King, hand on hip, feet apart firmly planted? That’s a Holbein. His paintings are masterful but his “breath of life” exists in his drawings. They are spookily alive; the sitter’s stare directly gazing out through the centuries in unseeing eyes that saw all. Holbein’s drawings captured the person alive.
In recent years art has come to be seen as frivolous to some taxpayers. What they fail to see is the breath of life art inspires in minds & creativity, curiosity, skepticism to the “known” truths; perhaps these very reasons explain their mindset. An expanded mind questions & acts; a closed mind accepts what it is told.
Please support your local artists, galleries & especially teachers who give of themselves to open minds. All are needed, all are important to democracy & progress. Inquire as to whether candidates support art. Their answers will be quite illuminating.
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