Looking East / Looking West Views from Two Landscape Painters
September 6 – October 15, 2023
As far back as I can remember, I have spent lots of time walking outdoors. I love to be outside—in the woods, hiking with my dogs, in the gardens by my house. About twenty years ago, I took a pastel landscape painting class, and began to combine my love of the natural world with painting. Painting the places I see has given me another deep way in which I can connect with them. It’s been an immensely satisfying practice for me.
The paintings are done in pastel and, increasingly, oil paint. They are based in observation and sketching— some are finished plein air, and some in the studio. It’s hard for me to analyze my own paintings, but what I feel catches my eye is mostly strong composition. I love light and texture, but what really makes me want to paint a scene is the way in which I am able to compose it.
I am glad to be able to share my work with others, and hope that some of the beauty of what I see around me can reach them through what I’m able to paint. You can see more of my work on my website, vignoneart.com.
I have been painting landscapes in pastels exclusively since 1996. Previously I had been an oil painter, working with the figure and still life but a trip to Iceland changed my direction. Being in that huge, raw landscape compelled me to re-create the effects myself as a way to delve deeper into what I had been seeing.
The subject of the work in this show is the American Southwest, especially New Mexico, a place I have returned to 20 times. There is a great similarity between the scale and openness of Iceland and New Mexico, though the quality of light and climate are completely different. I keep returning because of the tremendous openness of the sky and land and long viewable distances is where I feel most at home.
These are the largest of my pieces and I thought it would be interesting to see them together in one show, something I have never done before. I hope you get a sense of a place very different from the intimate beauty of New England.