Friday, January 9, 2015

When Life imitates Art

The sun is just about to set over the Pacific ocean and I’m sitting on the deck at the Hotel Laguna with old friends. A glass of wine beside me, I’m basking in the glow of a scene which has been captured in paint countless times. 

Sunset at the Hotel Laguna
As the sun sinks below the horizon in it’s riotous display of color, I’m left to ponder the philosophical position of Oscar Wilde; Life imitates Art far more than Art imitates Life. Although others have watched the same sunset for centuries, does one notice the beauty and wonder of the iconic California scenery and light because poets and painters have taught the loveliness of such an effect? What is found in life and nature is not what is really there, but is that which artists have taught people to find there, through art. 

Crystal Cove Beach, Newport
I always spend a day or two in the OC before heading up to Santa Barbara for the annual Great American Figure show at Waterhouse Gallery. This year my husband came along and it was great to visit favorite haunts from our years in CA, including St. Francis by the Sea, the church where we were married.

Pamela by Richard Schmid
It was great catching up with with Molly Schmid, Hsin Yao Tseng and of course Diane and Ralph Waterhouse. Molly's father Richard had a painting in the show which was an early work from the fifties. It was quite interesting to see how his painting style has evolved. I also had the pleasure to finally meet Matt Smith (one of my favorite landscape painters) and Jove Wang, who's mural-sized painting was masterful!

Matt Smith and his wife Tracy
Hsin, Molly & me

Diane Waterhouse
Jove Wang

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