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Showing posts from January, 2013

Winter in New York: A Sugary Snow for a Friday Evening

It started snowing last evening around the time of the Friday commute home. The wind blew the snow around, like a whirl of granulated sugar. The snow sparkled as it fell and settled in small drifts.

The Village looks picturesque in snow. A walk around indicated that many people who ventured out into the snow - and it was a cold and windy evening - found ways to have some fun with it. For others, the snow just meant extra work and extra time getting home from work. It was hard to walk on this sweet stuff falling to the earth.

George Bellows in New York: Rambles and Excavations

In 1904, George Bellows (1882-1925) arrived in New York City. He was a big six-foot-tall dropout of Ohio State with an equally large personality, and he quickly found his way to his new art mentor, Robert Henri (1865-1929), and to the woman who would become his wife and a favorite painting subject, Emma Louise Story.

Henri schooled his students, like Bellows, in the everyday life of New York, pressing them to push beyond the conventional boundaries of both art and the city. He encouraged his students (Bellows, Joseph Stella, Stuart Davis, Edward Hopper, Rockwell Kent, among others) to carefully observe the shoreline, construction sites, street life in the tenements, and rowdy rallies in the public squares.

For Bellows, an artist with creative ambitions and a vigorous intellectual temperament, New York made an ideal subject for his pursuits. During the early years, 1904 to 1909 (the date of Stag at Sharkey's), he rambled up and down the city to take in its myriad spectacles. He re…