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Charles Burchfield’s Icebound Lake Boat—Realism As A Springboard To Imagination

Above is the painting Icebound Lake Boat. It was completed by the artist Charles Burchfield in 1924.

Mr. Burchfield is an artist I like. 

Mr. Burchfield lived 1893-1967. He spent much of his life in communities around the Great Lakes.  

While I’m glad for the abilities I have to communicate with others, it would be fun if I could paint the world around me as did Mr. Burchfield. 

Mr. Burchfield is seen–in some of his paintings– as a painter in the style of American Realism. A great book on that topic that discusses Mr. Burchfield is American Realism by Edward Lucie-Smith.

Mr. Burchfield painted in more than one style over the course of his long career.

Though the painting above might be seen as realism, I don’t quite view it as such.

I see the portraying a real-life scene in a straightforward manner as a way of clearing the mind of distraction and creating the platform for metaphor and analogy.

What I see above is a ship that is icebound now, but that is waiting for a thaw.

I can think of things in life that seem stuck, but that may advance when better conditions arrive.

Icebound Lake Boat is what we make of it.

I guess that is why people sometimes say that art is what you make of it.

October 29, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , | Leave a comment