Tuesday, August 24, 2010

The Formula

This American artist loved to paint summer women in white dresses with skirts & scarves blowing in the wind surrounded by blue skies. (It should be noted that they are wearing "sensible" shoes.) His formula worked. Prolific & popular, Charles Courtney Curran (1861–1942) from Hartford, Kentucky, was only 23, when he received artistic recognition by exhibiting at New York’s National Academy of Design.

Curran’s style & skill in portraying light were honed by 2 years at Paris’ Academie Julien. On his return, Curran kept studios in New York City & Cragsmore, New York. Curran taught at the Pratt Institute, Cooper Union, & the National Academy. The cliffs & clouds he painted were the landscape of Cragsmore, a community of artists.

He liked to inject just a little bit of whimsical tension into his paintings of fragile, innocent women in white dresses by precariously perching them atop craggy hilltops & ledges engulfed in a perfect backdrop of blue sky & fluffy white clouds. But only a little bit of tension, mind you. At least I think it was whimsy. The women standing alone remind me of early 20th century Lady Liberties.

Charles Courtney Curran (1861-1942) Summer Clouds 1917

Charles Courtney Curran (1861-1942) The Boulder 1919

Charles Courtney Curran (1861-1942) On the Heights

Charles Courtney Curran (1861-1942) Summer 1906

Charles Courtney Curran (1861-1942) Sunlit Valey 1920

Charles Courtney Curran (1861-1942) Noonday Sunlight

Charles Courtney Curran (1861-1942) On the Cliff 1910

Charles Courtney Curran (1861-1942) The Veiled Cloud 1926

Charles Courtney Curran (1861-1942) Faraway Thoughts

Charles Courtney Curran (1861-1942) Ragged Clouds 1922

Charles Courtney Curran (1861-1942)

Charles Courtney Curran (1861-1942)

Charles Courtney Curran (1861-1942) Sunny Morning

Charles Courtney Curran (1861-1942) High Country 1917

Charles Courtney Curran (1861-1942

Charles Courtney Curran (1861-1942) Sunshine and Haze

Charles Courtney Curran (1861-1942) The Green Jacket 1917

Charles Courtney Curran (1861-1942)

Charles Courtney Curran (1861-1942) Cliffs at Cragsmor
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