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Our "Art Moment of the Day" Posts for January, 2015 on Facebook

American grenre painter, Francis William Edmonds is known for his humorous rural scenes which were popular in the 1830's. Such paintings influenced American magazine covers (Rockwell etc) a century later. His day job? Edmonds was a Banking executive who singed his paintings with pseudonyms to blur his artistic endeavors from his lofty business reputation.

Art Moment, Saturday, January 31, '15
"Barking Up the Wrong Tree
" c early 1850's
Francis William Edmonds, 1806-1863
Birmingham, Museum of Art, Birmingham, AL

Archibald Motley knew the rules, but broke them in creating lively canvases imparting the vibrancy of African American life. He was a graduate of the Art Institute of Chicago. His specialty was portraits which he used to establish respect and pride for his race. Although from New Orleans and having never lived in Harlem, Motley is considered one of the contributors of the Harlem Renaissance.

Art Moment, Friday, January 30, '15
"Octoroon Girl" 1925, Archibald Motley 1891-1981
Michael Rosenfeld Gallery, New York

Catalan Spanish artist Ramon Casas participated in the Paris Salons. He visited Paris in the autumns and winters, living at the Moulin de la Galette. In Spain, he reproduced what he knew in Paris, founding a bar "Els Quartre Gats" patterned after Le Chat Noir, complete with its own periodical. He was one of the founders of the Catalan art movement known as "modernisme."

Art Moment, Thursday, January 29, '15
"L'absenta Au Moulin de la Galette" 1892
Ramon Casas, 1866-1932, Museu de Montserrat, Barcelona

Celebrated French, California and Hawaii artist Jules Tavernier left France in the 1870's and never returned. After a trip painting and sketching his way across the American continent for Harper's, he enjoyed a wildly successful "Bohemian Club" decade in SF. To escape hounding creditors, he fled to Honolulu in 1885. There, he founded the Volcano School, but died at 49. Read more in our February '15 Newsletter.

Art Moment, Wednesday, January 28, '15
"Sunrise Over Diamond Head " 1888,
Jules Tavernier, 1844-1889, Honolulu Museum of Art

Critics did not like the Manet's "The Railway," perhaps because of title and its location -- an iron bridge above the rising steam from the rail yard of the Gare Saint-Lazare Station in Paris. The model is Victorine Meurent, who was also the model for Manet's earlier works Olympia and the Luncheon on the Grass.

Art Momentt, Monday & Tuesday, January 226-27, '15
"The Railway" 1873, Eduard Manet 1832-1883
National Gallery of Art, Washington D.C.

Born in Momence, Illinois, Ruth Manerva Bennett was an exceptional California landscape painter. She studied at the Art Student's League in New York and then moved to LA in the 1920's. She continued studies at the Chouinard and Otis Art Institutes with Armin Hansen, Karoly Fulop, and Millard Sheets. She exhibited widely and won many awards. Her day job ... teaching High School art in El Monte and LA.

Art Moment, Sunday, January 25, '15
"Oak Grove" date not known
Bodega Bay Heritage Gallery Collection
Ruth Manerva Bennett 1899-196

Artist Joshua Meador frequently visited Bodega Bay in the late 1940's and early 1950's. He was a legendary pioneer in animation effects for Disney Studios for 30 years, but always thought of himself as a painter first and foremost. Bodega Bay Heritage Gallery is proud to feature his family's collection.

Art Moment, TGIF Friday, January 23, '15
"Bodega Dock" (Old Meridith Wharf) Bodega Bay, circa 1950
Joshua Meador 1911-1965, Private Collection, 

During the early 1880's, Suzanne Valadon served as a model for Renoir as well as Toulouse-Lautrec, Modigliani, Degas and others in Monmartre. Suzanne also modeled for Renoir's famous "Dance at Bougival." Link to our January newsletter article for more.

Art Moment, Thursday January 22 '15
"Girl Braiding Her Hair" (Suzanne Valadon) 1885
Pierre-Auguste Renoir 1841-1919, Museum Langmatt, Baden, Switzerland

Influential California style watercolor pioneer and legend, Millard Sheets captured the spirit of Northern Minnesota when he visited Duluth, Minnesota as a summer guest in 1952. Here he demonstrates a quasi-pointillism technique for art students.

Originally, there were two windmills at this site, made famous by Renoir's ”Bal du Moulin de la Galette." Other artists painted there too, Utrillo, Dufy, Bernard, Toulouse Lautrec, Picasso and Van Gogh. Since then, it has hosted a television station and is now a restaurant -- Le Moulin de la Galette, 83, Rue Lepic, Paris,  France.

American impressionist William Merritt Chase was 36 when he created this pastel. He often featured women or children in leisurely outdoor poses. A great art teacher, one of his many famous students was Edward Hopper. In 1914, he taught painting in Carmel.

In the 17th century, there were no Catholic churches in Holland. DeWitt painted this imaginary scene for a Catholic who dreamed of having a Cathedral in Holland. At the time, they worshiped in homes. DeWitt was not religious. This painting was part of the "Girl with a Pearl Earring" exhibition at SF's de Young in 2013.

Claude Monet painted this for the Paris Salon of 1865 at age 25. He did an oil sketch in the field and created this canvas in studio. Later on, he championed impressionism, creating paintings on site, "en plein air." Confusion over the similarity of last names, Edouard Manet mistakenly received compliments for this painting. Amused, Manet sought out and met the younger Monet.

Aloha nui! Linda and I flew back last night from a quick trip to Honolulu, including an enjoyable visit to the Honolulu Museum of Art. Georgia O'Keeffe was in Hawaii in 1939 for nine weeks. White Lotus was one of her Hawaii paintings. You can learn more of Georgia's 1939 visit in our January newsletter.

With the GG Bridge closed this weekend, here is a scene entitled "The Golden Gate" by William Keith which gives us cause to consider that, once upon a time, there was no bridge. Keith lost his SF studio in the '06 quake and relocated to the relative safety of the Berkeley Hills.

Winslow Homer was 54 when he painted his "Cloud Shadows." Here, an old salt with fishing grear in tow, spends a precious and enjoyable moment in a seaside conversation with a lovely young woman. The figures in the center bottom third of the canvas are lost in conversation, unconcerned of a mass of passing clouds.

Vermeer painted rare outdoor street scene 358 years ago in the late 1650's. Historians can't say for certain, but believe the location is now the Vermeer Centre Delft. Moderately well known during his lifetime, Vermeer was all but forgotten for two centuries after his death, but is now revered among the greats of the Dutch Golden Age.

Ralph Love captured desert light like no one else. He is mostly self taught but did study with Sam Hyde Harris. He is best known for his Grand Canyon paintings. Here, he paints a prize winning scene of the eastern Sierra gold mining ghost town of Bodie, just north of Mono Lake.

William Bouguereau was an academic traditionalist known for his realism in creating classical nude subjects, especially women. Highly successful, his figurative work of peasant women sold well. A regular at the Paris Salon, he was reviled by the avant garde impressionists.

While a 21 year old student at the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris in 1873, Julien Weir said of French impressionism, "I never in my life saw more horrible things ... worse than the Chamber of Horrors." 18 years later, he had evolved into one of America's best impressionists! His "The Red Bridge" is his critically praised masterpiece.

The elephant seals have returned. Drake's Beach is just south of Bodega Bay and is a relatively quiet cove, part of the mostly wild and windy Point Reyes National Seashore. It recent years, elephant seals have chosen Drakes Beach for a winter rookery. Linda's painting shows Drake's Beach from the National Seashore's overlook for the elephant seals.

During the late 40's and early '50's, Joshua Meador enjoyed leaving Hollywood and motoring up the California's Coast. Driving his woodie station wagon and pulling his tear drop trailer, he would paint in Morro Bay, Monterey, Bodega Bay, Mendocino and northward into Oregon.

Bonne Année !!! ... In Paris of the 1890's, Toulouse-Lautrec thrived in the midst of the creative storm swirling among the patrons of Montmartre's Le Chat Noir. Here, alluring model Suzanne Valadon pays the price the morning after absinthe and revelry. Link to our January '15 article on Suzanne Valadon.