18 March 2010
Figure and landscape
A long time ago......I was about 16 yrs old and I saw a reproduction of this painting by Giovanni Fattori, an italian painter that belonged to the "Resurgimento" or the Macchiaolli group of painters. These artists sort of announced the impressionist movement while making the naturalistic art which was en vogue back then (in the first half of the 1880's) .
I sought this image out because it impressed me so much back then. Today, I remain impressed and may be I can expand on what is that so attracts me to it. First, a figure in a landscape. Besides the obvious man-nature yuxtaposition, it gives everything so much sense of scale and beauty. I think it is no accident that my last painting was a figure in a wild landscape as well (see previous post) . Second, the gorgeous simplicity of design, light and shadow. Just look how luminous those tree trunks feel. You can hear the bees buzzing in and out. And last but not least, the loose brushtroke and ease of technique. Everything in here "belongs". Sure, the woman's dress is old-fashioned now and she is surely going to have a heat stroke. But that ruffled blue dress makes her such an attention grabber in all its artifice. I just love looking at this.