Friday, February 8, 2013

The Gallery- Art and Nature

During the depths of winter a gardener can find himself with too much time on his hands.  And if you don't believe me... well, you will after you read this post.  But let me back up a bit. The other day I was looking at a painting by Braque that reminded me of an image I saw just a day earlier on Flickr's Horticultural Art photostream.  Do you know about Flickr's Horticultural Art?  If not, you need to take a look at some of the beautiful natural images there.

The painting on the left, by Georges Braque, is Trees At Estaque and the photo on the right, that I saw earlier, is of Syringa vulgaris (Lilac) leaves from Horticultural Art.  I was struck by the similarities I saw in these two images--one a painting from 1908 and the other a photograph from 2011.  Both, of course, are works of art but the common thread that holds them together is clearly the attempt to depict nature in a new and different way.

Friends of mine are fed up to their transcendental back teeth with me quoting Thoreau but it seems appropriate here so I'll do it one more time.  Thoreau once said that..."Art is not tame, and Nature is not wild, in the ordinary sense. A perfect work of man's art would also be wild or natural in a good sense."  With Thoreau's quote in mind, and the lilac leaves reminding me of the Braque painting, I wondered what some of the most famous artists felt about the relationship between art and nature and so I went digging for a few of their thoughts.  I also went back to the Horticultural Art photostream to see if I could come up with a few more examples of "nature's art" that I thought might resonate with some of the artist's "fine art," like the lilac leaves did for me with the Braque painting. And so, a few of the pairings I put together, along with some artist's musings on art and nature, appear below.  I hope you enjoy them.  You can click on any of the images to see a slide-show of all of them in larger format.
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