“Artists are people driven by the tension between the desire to communicate and the desire to hide.”
**Paintings by 19th century American artist Thomas Hovenden
“Lady Godiva, was an 11th-century Anglo-Saxon noblewoman who, according to a legend dating back at least to the 13th century, rode naked – only covered in her long hair – through the streets of Coventry in order to gain a remission of the oppressive taxation imposed by her husband on his tenants. The name “Peeping Tom” for a voyeur originates from later versions of this legend in which a man named Tom had watched her ride and was struck blind or dead.” Wikipedia
Thank you Janice Wald at Refections for reminding me of this painting.
Everyone LOVED blue and white china!
It was said of Fitz Hugh Lane that he had no romantic attachments. One might wonder when viewing his paintings if men and women were unimportant details, little nothings compared to the sea. His neighbors spoke not of a misanthropic man but of a generous, happy soul.
As a child it is believed he’d been poisoned by an Apple-of-Peru plant and forever more suffered paralysis in his legs. He lived by the sea where legless ships glided over nearly still waters with only the slightest breezes puffing sails. At least this was how he often painted the sea. How does a boy with no sails, no useful legs find his harbor? Find his movement? Paint brushes transport and canvas carries the artist home.
Maybe his stillness led to the luminous oceans of his work. Maybe being forced to sit still brought to mind the rushed, oh-so-self-important moments of others and how easily the sea of life took them all away, daily, yearly. Maybe a boy with useless legs understood the transporting power of being still.
Or maybe he just liked boats.
Serene Art Historians Speaking: