Still, as a young man during the early years of the Depression, Koch found the means to spend five years in Paris, where he studiously avoided formal art instruction and learned on his own by copying pictures at the Louvre.
Back in New York in the mid's he married Dora Zaslavsky, a highly regarded music teacher, and embarked on a career in portrait painting. It was lucrative enough to finance a move in to the majestic El Dorado apartment building on Central Park West and to allow Koch to assume the elegant lifestyle he chronicled in his paintings. Koch's first solo exhibition in New York, in , consisted entirely of landscapes.
A small but expansive painterly sketch of New York harbor from proves that he had a nice feel for paint and atmosphere. But an aversion to the outdoors limited his career as a landscape painter, and the lessons he took from the old masters overrode any modernist impulses animating that picture. Inspired by Vermeer and 17th-century Dutch still life, Koch became a finicky painter of coolly lighted indoor genre scenes, busily detailed still lifes and, under the influence of his hero Rubens, statuesque nudes.
By the time he moved to the El Dorado, Koch was fully formed as an anti-modernist painter. Most of the work here postdates that move, and it evinces little development over the ensuing two decades. What is compelling, however, is not the paintings as painting but the fusion of art and life they represent. Koch and his wife were inveterate and unfailingly gracious entertainers, and many of his most impressive paintings depict guests quietly conversing with one another and their hosts.
There are paintings of Dora giving lessons to students at the piano; of small groups comfortably seated in fine old chairs; and in Koch's major efforts, a dozen or more people gathered for afternoon cocktails. The guests included luminaries like the composer Virgil Thomson, the artist brothers Moses and Raphael Soyer, the music critic Noel Straus and other musicians, artists and writers. The light is always low in these pictures, the atmosphere hushed and decorous. They are as far as can be from, say, Nan Goldin's snapshots of bohemian squalor.
These are classical visions of an intellectual paradise as carefully constructed in life as on canvas.
For all its seeming elitist insularity and its removal from the tumultuous changes of postwar America -- zestfully chronicled in a catalog essay by Philip Lopate -- the Koch apartment was a kind of public place, a utopian theater of cultivated civility. Koch was not one to trot out his demons or confess his most intimate desires.
But his art did hint at a private side.
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Some paintings show him or his stand-in with one or two nude models, who are usually seen relaxing on a break or dressing at the end of a session while the artist continues to refine his canvas. There is never any breach of professional decorum. Yet as you study them, you notice something curious: though never less than beautiful, his female models are depicted with a certain academic detachment, while his male subjects are subtly eroticized.
Whether nude or in jeans and tight T-shirts, his men have hunky, big-shouldered bodies and movie-star-handsome faces. There are no overtly homoerotic pictures here one wonders whether Koch made any for his private satisfaction , and there are numerous pictures ostensibly of heterosexual bliss.
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- 5 Ways to Use Shadows in Your Paintings.
It helps give the illusion of 3 dimensional space. Shadows can also be used to convey a feeling or emotion in your painting.
You may use soft shadows for something lovely or comforting, or harsh shadows for a more sinister or dark feeling. In this final example the shadows are used to create more of an attitude.
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These girls look mischievous and defiant, like they work for the mob making deliveries or something. Your options are really endless and fun to explore.
In the end, shadows are just another fun element to explore and play with in your compositions. Happy painting!
Shadows Quotes - BrainyQuote
Click below to learn more! Here are 5 ways I use shadows in oil painting: Quick announcement - EmptyEasel has created a quicker, easier way for artists to have their own art website. Click here to learn more and get a simple art website of your own! To define a subject I love to use shadow to help define, or carve out, my subject. As a design element Cast shadows create the most interesting shapes. I painted the apple in first to show the difference with and without the shadow: You can see how the shapes are an important part of the finished work.
To ground an object A common issue for beginning painters can be the floating object. To create visual depth An easy way to add depth to your painting is to use shadow.
ORFN: A Life Under Shadows
To convey feeling or emotion Shadows can also be used to convey a feeling or emotion in your painting. Start typing to see results or hit ESC to close. See all results.