Friday, September 16, 2011

WEEK 25 / The Pine Tree, Sebasco, Maine

The Pine Tree, Sebasco, Maine
James Aponovich
Oil on canvas, 8" x 13", 2011


Here we are on the Maine Coast again. This time we are in mid-coast, just east of Casco Bay, staying at the house of friends. The coast here is different, long fingers of land stretching down surrounded by the sea with a myriad of inlets hiding paintings yet to be done.
The hard part is not just in finding the right spot but dealing with the constantly shifting nature of tide and atmosphere. When we arrived the air was heavy with a south east breeze bearing fog. It is a stunning land of eagles and seals accompanied by a symphony of gulls. Visual space is ambiguous, determined by gradations of value, color is subdued, everything is distant. Fog envelopes you, there is no horizon, sea and sky merge.


The wind shifts, now from the north west and you are amazed at the islands that now appear. There is more brilliant blue and deep green than you know what to do with. There is not enough time to start another new time.

John Marin
The Pine Tree, Small Point, Maine, 1926
Watercolor on paper, 17" x 22"
Portland Museum of Art, Portland, Maine

We are also here to find where Marin painted. Small Point is just east of here, maybe a few miles by water. In 1915 Marin's NY art dealer was the eminent photographer
Alfred Stieglitz ( Georgia O'keeffe's husband). Stieglitz forwarded him some cash so he could paint for the summer in Maine. Marin took the money, but instead bought an island in Small Point Harbor. I can't say as I blame him. There's plenty of "wicked good paintin' here".
Tomorrow we head down to Cape Arundel.

Copyright 2011 James Aponovich

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