Greg Mort by Victoria L. Manning ~ Somerville Manning Gallery

Greg Mort 20th Anniversary Celebration by Victoria L. Manning ~ Somerville Manning Gallery

Spanning twenty years, the relationship between the Somerville Manning Gallery and artist Greg Mort is truly a special one. When we first met, the gallery was still in its original location, smaller and less beautiful then the 1814 historic mill on the Brandywine River that we are fortunate to be in now. Greg and Nadine’s twins – who are now college seniors – were newborns. From the beginning, Greg’s shows at Somerville Manning were extremely successful. Now, I have the honor of seeing those early works being generously donated to prestigious museum collections.

Highlights of those years include the acquisition of his painting, -Stewardship- for the White House collection, and Mort meeting the late Carl Sagan who asked to use his image -Fabric of Space- for his new book, The Blue Dot. More successes followed as The Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, and The Corcoran Museum of Art added -Year of the Comet- and -Dreams-, respectively to their permanent collections. Then, in 1996, the Mort family lived in Italy and Greg was commissioned by the University of Padova to create -The Three Galileo’s- as a gift for Pope Paul.

These past two decades are but an infinitesimal moment in the cosmos that Mort brings to our conscientiousness through his paintings. His close examination of his subjects, and superior technical ability, create trompe l’oeil still life paintings as perfected as Harnet. His scientific mind seems to examine his subject through a microscope down to the atoms, whether it is a piece of fruit on lace, or a landscape. Then he turns his telescope toward space challenging our minds to expand and encompass the solar systems and galaxies beyond. The light, which illuminates his objects and landscapes, defines the shapes, colors, shadows and details, and so ultimately the paintings, is the same light that travels through the blackness of space emanating from the distant stars.

Mort’s thoughtful selection and arrangement for the compositions of his still life paintings speaks clearly to the viewer. He often chooses the beautiful forms and colors of seashells, rocks, fossils. Are they not representatives of time travelers through our geographic history, and components of the land and seascapes portrayed in an artist’s vision? The light, energy, and gravity – forces from the universe – are what shape and form our natural world around us. The stark blackness in a Mort background is visually beautiful, but doesn’t it subtlety remind us of infinite space? Isn’t a seascape a beautiful reminder of the tides? After Mort urges us to ponder these universal concepts, he brings us back to Earth to our emotional reality with a romantic ribbon wrapped around a luscious fruit, or winding through his painting.

Time, Space, Light, Shadow, Color all connect in Mort’s vision imaginatively, and expertly, on canvas and paper. He transforms the universe into a painted surface with beauty time and time again. Twenty years seems so short and yet it has been so full. by Victoria L. Manning ~ Somerville Manning Gallery GregMort 20th Anniversary at the Somerville Manning Gallery

Highlights Of Milan's Brera Art Gallery

The Brera art gallery in Milan or Pinacoteca di Brera as it is known in Italian is really quite unique when it comes to Italy”s major art galleries. Unlike other galleries which have been founded by the wealth of noble families or the church, the Brera gallery in Milan is down to the policies of Napoleon who actually suppressed the various churches across the region and took their riches off to academies and galleries.

Over the next two hundred years these collections grew substantially in size and took in some of northern Italy”s greatest paintings from the Renaissance era including representatives from the Venetian school as well as works by greats such as Piero della Francesca and Raphael.

The Brera gallery in Milan houses some exquisite paintings and here we will mention some of the ones not to be missed so you can make the most of your visit to this magnificent art gallery in Milan. The Valle Romita Polyptych is an altar piece dating back to 1410 and involved a lot of hard work on the Brera”s behalf to reconstitute this piece. The 5 main panels came along with Napoleon but the other 4 had to be tracked down and were purchased at a later date.

The Riot in the Galleria located in the east wing of the Brera gallery is Umberto Boccioni”s 1911 work of art which depicts the Milanese dashing for the doors of the famous Caffe Zucca which is today still an extremely popular cafe bar located just off piazza del Duomo. The same area of the gallery also features masterpieces by the Venetian Renaissance master Bellini such as two different paintings of the Virgin and Child, one is a Flemish style portrait that Bellini painted when he was 40 years of age and the other is a luminous scene of colour and light which was in fact painted by bellini 40 years later.

Another great artist of the Renaissance era which features at the Brera gallery in Milan is none other than Mantegna who”s masterpiece of the Dead Christ, painted around the year 1500, is displayed here. Located directly next to this painting is Finding the Body of St Mark which is a 1560″s painting by Tintoretto depicting the finding of the body of St Mark by the Venetian merchants in the Crusades.

Positioned by the entrance of the gallery is where Raphael”s painting of the Marriage of the Virgin is to be found. This early work by Raphael depicts the terrestrial marriage of the Virgin Mary to Joseph. Directly adjacent to this work of art is Piero della Francesca”s Montefeltro Altarpiece which is a scene that shows the Duke of Montefeltro kneeling before the Virgin and Child after just months earlier when his wife had given birth to a male heir who tragically died within weeks.

Just on the other side of the entrance to the Brera art gallery is a work of art by Caravaggio which dates back to 1605 and is named the Supper at Emmaus. The mood and tension of this painting are enhanced by the deep black shadows and bright highlights.

Leading round to the west wing of the gallery is where another couple of wonderful paintings are situated. Francesco Hayez”s 1859 painting of The Kiss was intended as an allegory of the struggle for Independence and the importance of family. Adjacent to this work of art is Canaletto”s Bacino di San Marco which is in fact one of the seven paintings of this scene by the 18th century master of Venetian city scape’s. The painting features St Mark”s bell tower and the Doge”s Palace.

To make the most of your visit it is recommended to use the excellent audio guides which will make sense of all the various works on display, cheap guided tours are also available on weekdays which can cater for any number of people although these must be booked two or three days in advance. There are many flights available from most major cities in Europe to Malpensa Airport.

Oil Painting In Florence Italy

Oil painting is the method of painting with pigments that bound with means of drying oil, especially linseed oil in early modern Europe. The oil, such as linseed was simmered with pine resin or even frankincense, these were in oil painting used as varnishes and were esteemed for their splendor and glossiness.

Other oils occasionally used in oil painting include poppy seed oil, walnut oil, and safflower oil. These oils give a variety of properties to the oil paint, such as less staining or different drying times.

Certain differences are also visible in the luster of the paints depending on the oil. Painters often use different types of oils in the same painting depending on specific pigments and desired effects. The paints themselves also develop a particular feel depending on the media. These techniques can be contemplated in the oil painting lessons in Florence

Traditionally, painting was performed with paint brushes, but there are other methods, including the palette knife, the rag, and even directly from the paint tube. Oil paint remains wet longer than many other types of artists’ materials, so a reality in many painter’s studios is the removal of oil paint from the painting.

This can be done with a rag and some turpentine for a certain time while the paint is still wet, but after a while, the if the layer is hard it must be scraped. Oil paint dries by oxidation, not evaporation, and is usually dry to the touch in one to fifteen days

In the oil painting lessons in Italy, you will learn that the oil paint application is ‘fat over lean’ which means that each layer of paint must be oilier than the one underneath, to allow proper drying. There are many other painting media that can be used in oil painting, including cold wax, resins, and varnishes.

These additional media can help the painter to adjust the transparency of the paint, the luster of the paint, the density or ‘body’ of the paint, and the ability of the paint to hold or conceal the brushstroke. These variables are closely related to the expressive capacity of oil paint and can be learned in an oil painting art course.

It is generally dry enough to be varnished in six months to a year. But according to art conservators an oil painting is not totally dry until it is around 70 years old.

Netherlands painters in the 15th century were however the first to make oil the usual painting medium, followed by the rest of Northern Europe and Italy. The recognition of oil spread through Italy from the North, starting in Venice in the late 15th century.

By 1540 the previous technique for painting on panel, tempera had become all but extinct, although Italians kept using fresco for wall paintings, which was harder in Northern weather. But now, Italy reigns alone as the worlds top spot for oil painting course or oil painting lessons.

Toms Ballet Shoes for Dancing Lover

Dance is the most perfect way of relaxing the mind, body and soul. For most of the people dance is more than just a physical activity. Dance in all its beauty is a way to rejuvenate every aspect of a person’s being- physical, emotional, cognitive, intellectual and social. A person freely prancing around their house can also be said to be taking the pleasure of dance. Ballet is one such dance that needs years of practice for one to master it. This is the reason why most of the people prefer enrolling their children in a ballet class in the early years of their lives so that they can grow along with the dance and that the art becomes an essential part of their lives.

Originated in Italy in 15th century, ballet gives people the impression of elegance. As time goes on, ballet has become a dance with many typical characteristics. One of the prominent character is that ballet need dancers stand on tiptoe when they dance, and this is also the first impression the dance gives people. Many people are curious how those dancers did this, and maybe had copied at home furtively. Well, do not like the other dances, ballet dancing uses the designed ballet shoes specifically, dancers could not stand on tiptoe without this shoes.

Are you aware of that Ballet shoes are of sheer weight and which are designed purposely for ballet dancing? They are fabricated from canvas, soft leather, or satin. Ballet shoes encompass flexible and thin soles. Usually, women prefer to wear pink ballet shoes where as men wear white or black ballet shoes. Tan tinted ballet slipper, which are inconspicuous and consequently give the look of dancing shoeless or barefooted. These are worn in contemporary ballet dancing by women as well men. What’s more, the shoes must be lightweight and perfectly fit so the dancers can practice the ballet movements precisely. Comfortable is the most important element when dancers choosing their shoes. They do not care whether the design is fashion or glamorous. Dance awakens the within of you. It is a feast for the soul. You don’t stop dancing from growing old; you grow old from stopping to dance. Dancing helps you to relax, reducing stress and tension. Dance is also enormous for your first-class physical health in lot of ways. A big objective in dancing is to make each move seem effortless and natural. You just require taking hold of your Toms Ballet Shoes and hitting the floor.

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Introduction To Gothic Art

Some of the most valuable early artwork comes from a point of time before the Renaissance had begun, and going on through the early Middle Ages, referred to as the period of Gothic art. During this particular time in history, the artwork took on telling narrative stories through pictures, and much of these pieces were Christian and secular in nature. Some of the earliest examples of Gothic art are sculptures found on cathedral and abbey walls, and the first real form of Gothic artwork began as architectural works in fact, even becoming the subject matter for many stained glass windows at the time.

The style of painting that further defined Gothic art wasnt produced until nearly fifty years after Gothic architecture and sculptures, and even though the break between Romanesque artwork and the Gothic styles has remained imprecise at best, the beginnings of Gothic artwork seems to occur in various areas at different but related intervals. The artwork began in England and France around 1200, and in other areas like Germany and Italy between 1220 and 1300. The paintings stayed just as narrative as the architecture on church walls during this time, and has stayed the territory of secular storytelling for a long time afterwards.

Though Gothic art in paintings has had a relatively short time as the medium of choice amongst the artists, there is evidence that the artwork falls into four particular styles of these paintings, and these were the most common forms during this time period. The fresco, the panel painting, the illuminated manuscript, and the artwork done on stained glass are all depictions of Gothic painting. Of these particular types, stained glass artwork had remained a strong reminder of those ages long past, and is still created by master artisans that learned their trade skills from these dark ages.

In the case of the other three particular forms of Gothic painting, frescoes continued to be used as the pictorial narratives on church walls in southern Europe, and were a consistent incorporation of early Christian and Romanesque traditions. In Italy, during the 13th century, the panel painting began and spread throughout Europe. With this proliferation, panel paintings became even more predominant by the 15th century, and becoming even more popular than stained glass at the time. Since not all monumental works have survived, illuminated manuscripts are the most complete record of Gothic painting, and provide a comprehensive account of styles that would otherwise perished.

As the state of the world began to change, so too did the interpretations of the artwork as a reflection of these changing times and attitudes, and the movement became known as International Gothic by the late 15th century. From there, it had evolved into an art form depicting not just secular stories and allegories, but also resulted in the occurrence of more illuminated manuscripts and paintings as increased trade and the rise of cities and universities grew. With this proliferation of growth, more people were literate, and lead to better records kept with this occurring. Leading up to many of the well-known medieval artists today.

The International Gothic style of artwork was developed in Burgundy, Bohemia, and northern Italy in the late 13th and early 14th centuries. During this period in Gothic art, artists traveled widely around the civilized world at the time creating a common aesthetic among the aristocracy of the time, and removing the concepts of contrary artistic styles. The main influences for this period in artwork were derived from northern France, the Netherlands, and Italy. It was during this time, that aspects of rational uses of perspective and setting became a common feature, and other features included flowing lines and rich coloring.

In the case of Gothic sculpture, it had evolved from the elongated forms of the Romanesque style, and became a more naturalistic expression in the early 12th and late 13th centuries. Influences from Greek and Roman statuary were incorporated into drapery, facial expressions, and poses. The sculptor Claus Sluter and the changing tastes for more naturalistic styles became a harbinger for the end of the Gothic period of art, and signaled the beginning of the evolution into Renaissance period at the end of the 15th century.

In a time period where upheaval was the normal occurrence of many of the people then, Gothic art fell into the broad scope of medieval artwork that included such disparate elements and styles as Viking art and Celtic art, but in varying degrees relied upon the artistic heritage of the Roman Empire and the early Christian Church. In fact, much medieval artwork has the history of these elements conjoining and converging into the remarkable artistic legacy we read about today, and have contributed over time to the outcome of many other forms of art from the Renaissance to the present day.

d Street Painting – What You Should Know About Street Painting

Street Painting

Street painting recorded since early Street painting has been recorded throughout Europe since the 16th century. Street painters in Italy e called madonnari (pronounced: mah-doan-are-ee with madonnaro being the singular form) because they often created pictures representing the Madonna.

In 1972 the first International Street Painting Competition was held in Grazie di Curtatone, Italy. In 1972 the first International Street Painting Competition was held in Grazie di Curtatone, Italy. This recognition caused a whole new generation of street painters to emerge.

Street Painting Guide

– Step 1: Select the image you’ll be re-creating with chalk. Selecting a photograph is also popular.
– Step 2: Make color photocopies of the painting you’ll be re-creating. Several copies will be needed, especially if more than one artist will be working on the piece.
– Step 3: Draw a grid over the photocopies using a ruler and thin marker. Measure carefully so that all photocopies are gridded identically.
– Step 4: Label the graphed columns on your photocopies horizontally with alphabetical letters and vertically with numbers.
– Step 5: Mount photocopies on cardboard to make them easier to work with.

Street Painting Introduction

– Step 1: Use your photocopy and grids to guide you as you chalk out a rough outline of the complete image you are painting on the pavement – just enough to map out the image and get the proportions correct.
– Step 2: Start from the top of the painting area and begin painting the image with the colored chalk.
– Step 3: Lay a foundation of color using your fingers in small areas and a chalkboard eraser for larger areas. – Step 4: Fill in the details of the image using various shades of colored chalk. Continue to blend colors to gain the right effect. Leave some chalk color unblended on the surface of the pavement to bring out colors, highlights and details.
– Step 5: Work your way down the area of your painting.
– Step 6: Remove the masking tape to reveal clean, crisp outlines.

Michelangelo, Although Not Liking Painting And Known More For His Sculptures

Michelangelo, or to give him his full name Michelangelo diLodovico Buonarroti Simoni, which must have been a mouthful for his mother. When his mother called him in for his tea, by the time his mother had finished calling his name tea was over.

He was responsible for some of the worlds most famous wall murals, such as the Sistine Chapel. What makes artists such as Michelangelo such remarkable talents ? What makes them stand out from other artists. When you examine their lives, they are usually quite eccentric or troubled personalities that makes them totally dedicated to their work. What makes Michelangelo an exception is that he was not just brilliant at wall murals but his skills spread across to architecture, engineering, poetry and sculpture. Of all his skills I would like to concentrate on his artistry of producing wall murals. Although painting was not his favourite pastime his wall murals are by far his most spectacular pieces of work. He produced other brilliant pieces of sculpture but I think his real skill and passion comes out his wall murals in the Sistine Chapel. An examination of where he was born and his early life can go to some way of explaining this remarkable man.

One thing all artists need is light, so it is always an advantage living in warm climates. Michelangelo was born in a small village called Caprese,100 km east of Florence in Italy in 1475. Now if I was painting wall murals I know where I would rather work. Either the choice of the South of France or South of Blackburn ? it will take some thinking about.

He did not enjoy schooling he would rather be painting. Leaving school when young he joined a the humanist academy. His mother died when he was seven and he went to live with a stone cutter and his wife who lived in the farm of the quarry owned by Michelangelos father. Which is where he obviously had access to plenty of raw material to begin sculpturing.

By the time he was in his 30s he had become a renowned sculptor but he was took the commission of painting wall murals in the Sistine Chapel. It took 4 years to complete the wall murals. It is unusual it is called them wall murals when they are actually on a ceiling but any pictures painted on plastered walls or ceilings are called wall murals.

His commission to paint the wall murals was originally to be the 12 Apostles on the back drop of a starry sky. But Michelangelo wanted and got his way to to paint wall murals depicting the creation. The wall murals contained over 300 figures with the centre piece wall murals of book of Genesis. These are of the Creation of the Earth and Gods creation of Man
Among the other wall murals are one of the Creation of Adam, Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden, and other famous scenes from the Bible. One of the wall murals is exceptionally detailed which is of the Old Testament account of the Flood. The scene is of the animals entering the Ark with Noah guiding them in with the storm clouds brewing in the background and makes a dramatic picture.

Michelangelos wall murals of the Sistine Chapel can certainly be counted amongst his greatest works.