Friday, September 7, 2007

"Passed" Painters of the Day

In my son's school art curriculum we are studying Early American Art. It has been fun to learn about all of the forms of early art, not just portrait painting. Early Americans were creative and resourceful when it came to making and creating art.... But this weeks lesson was on painters, more specifically, the Peale Family of painters from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The head of the family was Charles Willson Peale (1741-1827), and in his family of painters, Charles had a brother, sons, daughters, nieces, and nephews that were painters.

Charles was known for painting realistic, or representational portraits of his subjects and was commissioned to paint George Washington 14 times. He went to Europe to study with well-known painters of the era and came back to the states to set up his own studio.

Charles and his 1st wife gave some of their 10 children names of famous artists. (Rachel died in 1790 and Charles remarried in 1791 and had 6 more children!)

Raphaelle Peale had his father's gift for realistic painting, but did not paint portraits, instead, he painted small still lifes. He paved the way for this style of painting in America. His painting of fruit is on the left.

Rembrandt Peale, another son, was a gifted portrait artist and his talent was nurtured by Charles at an early age. (One of his portraits is on the left, entitled "Three Little Faces"). Charles would allow him to sketch an important person who came for a sitting. In my son's curriculum, there was a cute story of a time when Charles was sketching President Washington. He asked if the president would allow four of his children to come in and sketch Mr. Washington as well. They all sat around the president and sketched. Another artist friend came to the home to pay his respects and saw what was going on, and said, "Oh goodness, the president is being peeled!" Whether this is true or not, it makes a funny story.
Charles had some very talented nieces too and I'll write about them next time.

Have a safe and wonderful weekend.

And here is a sneak peek of my offering (Blessing is her name) for Ava Grace Silent Auction September 16-22.


the feathered nest said...

Suzanne, That first portrait is wonderful - it's amazing to me how artists are able to capture someone's expression!

Cute story - sounds like a fun unit to study. How's homeschooling going?

Your offering for the Ava Grace auction is just beautiful. Love that name - it's so appropriate. I'm sure the auction will be a success!

Have a good weekend!


Lana said...

I enjoyed the history lesson Suzanne ~ that was a fuuny story about the President being peeled, lol!

Your Ava Grace offering is beautiful.


Lorraine said...

Yikes. I'm still trying to wrap my head around the notion of 16 children.

Grace is beautiful.

FrenchGardenHouse said...

Suzanne, your offering for the auction is perfect! Sweet and angelic, like little Ava Grace.

Thanks for the lesson, to be able to paint like that (and like you!) would be such an amazing thing.

Miss Maddie's said...

Dear Suzanne, Your stories are always so informative and a pleasure to read.
Being one of the privileged to own a portrait of yours I can only say that Blessing is truly an angel to present to the auction for the wee sweet babe Ava Grace. Susan

Cathy Nash said...

Sweet, sweet painting--she looks so serene.