Tuesday, November 9, 2010


Maxfield Parrish

I was in a museum the other afternoon, a perfect spot to be during a lunch hour, not mine but the others who were in there with us, and from across the room Maxfield Parrish's
Hunt's Farm
called me across. It was the lighting around the farm house.

The elms — you should see these towering yard elms in the person of this painting! — every leaf singled out, certainly elegiac, three dimensional, all part of the process of the Parrish technique using photography, tracing, painting over and then the layers of varnish or glaze. By magic and a knowing he achieved just the spatial balance.

He lived most of his life in New Hampshire, nearby in fact to JD Salinger. There's something about that region. I saw the original painting maybe a half-hour from the artist's homestead.