Monday, March 1, 2010

Mudheads on Holiday

The term “mudhead” was originally used by Charles Hawthorne who founded the Cape Cod School of Art in Provincetown, MA. Mudhead was the term Hawthorne used to describe the method of painting the color and shape of a model with disregard to detail and features. At the time that Hawthorne taught, impressionism was a new concept and artists from all over the U.S. and Europe came to Cape Cod for its unique quality of light to study this new method. When Hawthorne died his student Henry Hensche taught this method of seeing and painting light to students. Today, mudheads are still taught by a handful of artists, such as Camille Przewodek and Joseph Ebersberger.
(This is a detail from a painting that I'm submitting into the "eight+" show at O'Connor's in Multnomah Village. The "eight+" are approximately eight of the most regular PPASP members who meet at O'Connor's. I'll post the "whole" painting tomorrow!)
Painting "mudheads" is way of considering the concept: "less is more".

Oil on 30x40 stretched canvas (Update: SOLD!)

12 comments:

ArtSparker said...

It has a midcentury feel. The term "mudheads" make me thing of the Golem, a man made of clay or mud and brought to life.

Sheila said...

I learned something new! Thank you Celeste! I'm going to try this too. So much art, so little time! Your painting has a 60's feel to it. I like it very much.

B Boylan said...

Love the energy in this one, Celeste!
I've heard that term "mudhead" from Gretha after she came back from a Camille workshop. Thanks for sharing.

nouvelles couleurs - vienna atelier said...

Celeste maybe I have already told you that I love your art :-) but I must tell you another time.
You have somthings light and frisch
is like a new impressinism wonderfull and delicate, lot delicate

bravissima Celeste

Paul Batch said...

Nice work. Love the "mudheads" :)

AutumnLeaves said...

What a gorgeous painting, Celeste! I didn't realize there was a name for blurring out the features. I rather like that effect too (and I used it myself in a recent piece). It becomes a sensation of people being both different and apart from each other, yet still all tied together by the fact that in the big picture (hah! no pun intended!), we are each insignificant. Hope that made sense. Only on my second cup of coffee this morning. I love visiting your work; always unique and beautiful!

Tina Steele Lindsey said...

I am such a minimalist, so less is more is my motto in just about everything! However as far as mudheads go I've often thought it sure must take a mighty pressure off worrying that features are correct. Also that style painting seems to sell well. I very much like your painting, good vibes from it, Celeste. Best wishes.

Elizabeth Seaver said...

I had never heard of the term, mudheads before, Celeste, though I had seen paintings in the style. Thanks for that illumination.

Love the painting!

Dean H. said...

I've been familiar with the "mudhead" concept for a long time, and I'm a believer! Don't become involved in turning every painting with a figure in it into a portrait. Too much detail in the faces makes the viewer stop there, and start trying to identify the subject. Human nature.

Love your painting. And, wow, impressive size!

Perry Brown said...

Very, very cool painting, Celeste. You are busy!

Lokelani Forrest said...

Interesting piece and interesting title. I like it, it has a wet, foggy feel to it. Also, I've nominated you for the Sunshine Award because I enjoy your blog, so now you need to go to my blog to get your reward and instructions. If I remember you've received it before, but I think you deserved it again.

Caio Fernandes said...

is this the orign of the american term "too mudy" when want to say that a painting is "kind of messy" ?