Sunday, February 24, 2013

Sunday

No painting by me today...so I thought I'd share this great photo of Andrew Wyeth, painting plein air on his jeep hood. (Photo by William Waterway Marks)
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Andrew Wyeth (1977) painting en plein air in a field on his Cushing, Maine farm overlooking the ocean. Wyeth's faithful yellow lab companion usually accompanied him on such outings. In the photograph, Wyeth is painting a scene of a sailboat cruising on the ocean as seen through a vista revealed between two clusters of trees. This particular model of Willys Jeepster Convertible allowed for Wyeth to comfortably paint plein air scenes. The hood of the Jeepster oftentimes served as a mixing palette. The front bumper of the vehicle was the perfect height and protruding width to allow Wyeth to comfortably rest his feet while perched on the hood.

Nearby on the ground is the portable box within which Andrew Wyeth transported his pigments, brushes, and assorted painting tools. He used a Mason Jar to transport his water for mixing colors and always had a rag handy for cleaning and drying brushes according to his artistic needs. At times, Wyeth would use the vehicle's hood as a palette to blend his pigments. This photo was taken by William Waterway Marks, who, along with his two horses, was a guest on the Wyeth farm for ten days. At the time, Marks was reaching the end of his 7,500 coast-to-coast horseback trek across America entitled, Ride For Nature, and Wyeth offered sanctuary to Marks so he and his horses could rest. Andrew and Betsy Wyeth were introduced to Marks by mutual friend, the artist, Eric Sloane. Today this Willys Jeepster Convertible remains on Wyeth's Cushing, Maine farm, which is under the care of Wyeth's son, Nicky Wyeth. Nicky Wyeth continues to drive this Jeepster on local errands. (From Wikipedia)

11 comments:

CrimsonLeaves said...

Thank you for the mini lesson, Celeste. I love hearing about famous artists that I haven't yet had time to research myself! I love the Jeep especially and I can see the dog in there waiting patiently.

Libby Fife said...

What a wonderful photo-thank you! Technology marches forward but an image as simple as this-an iconic painter working while sitting on the hood of his car-somehow transcends that inevitable push towards the future.

L.W.Roth, said...

The man knew how to paint plein air in comfort.
It would be nice to have the luxury of an expansive property that you needed a car to travel about, park where ever your eye was inspired and then use your hood as a palette.

Diana Moses Botkin said...

Thank you for sharing this and the story, Celeste. All very fascinating!

Dan Kent said...

Fascinating post. I feel much better now about my en plein air conditioning excursions. :)

Jeanette said...

This so reminds me of my mentor, Tom Greenshields and our outings to do some plein aire in the UK.

Tom had an E-type Jaguar which we'd set off in to some old country road and paint bulls in a field. He said the only good thing about the Jag was that there was a piece of the dashboard which folding down and was excellent for putting your bottle of water on for watercolours!

mary maxam said...

This is grand, I've never come across one like it before- thanks

Sharron said...

Recently obsessed with Andrew Wyeth's work. Thank you for sharing a bit of his life. Love that he used his Jeep as a mixing palette!

Lisa Graham Art said...

Thank you for sharing this...I love reading about other artists and their ways. My favorite Wyeth painting of all time is Christine's World. That painting has always moved me and I got the chance to look at it up close in NYC...it moved me to tears.

Thanks again on the mention of Ben Shahn. I received my books this week and his paintings are really special. The books I bought have most of the works in black and white so I need to find another with all color if there is one.

CHRIS MURRAY said...

I have the dog, now I need that adorable Jeep

susan jensen said...

He looks so content there.