Carl Hall, Peg Coe and Mark Clarke, Keith Achepohl and Morris Graves

Today we headed to Eugene to make a stop at the Karin Clarke Gallery to have a sneak preview of her new exhibit “Carl Hall: Nudes”…

and to bring Karin some copies of R’s very first monograph “Eden Again: The Art of Carl Hall” written in 2001, to sell during the exhibit.

It’s been many years since we’ve seen most of these paintings and they are really gorgeous…still left in the estate because of “difficult” subject matter.  These aren’t difficult though, they are just beautiful…Here’s “Model and Bird” from the 1970’s…

This is painting we don’t see anymore…oil painting of layers and glazes, painting that brings light and atmosphere into the room along with the fine hand of the draftsman…

The prices are amazingly reasonable if you are shopping, but the looking is free.  Salemites take note…all of these were painted in Hall’s PettyJohn Road studio in south Salem…We had a quick coffee with Karin who drew us a map of how to get to

   

the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art where we had free parking (thanks Danielle) and where we were meeting up with curator Danielle Knapp and painter Margaret Coe to look at the exhibit “Mark Clarke and Margaret Coe: Our Lives in Paint” featuring the work of Karin’s parents Peg Coe and Mark Clarke.  The show runs through April so there’s still plenty of time to get down to Eugene and it is worth the trip.  Here is a survey of the work of two artists who were married and both painting in home studios while raising two kids…two artists focused on making their work and working hard and the paintings are beautiful…from the beginning of their relationship and on for 50 years, plus  several paintings of Peg’s made since Mark’s death.  Peg says it best when she considers  that she and Clarke had “parallel lives as artists, but that they also created their own little world together: ‘Mark and I were deeply happy and had a singular commitment, but we always kept separate studios.  Painting is a solitary thing. You don’t want someone else’s energy in the room.  You don’t want to hear their paintbrushes.’ ” The beauty, the interest, the inevitable personal sorrows,  two lives lived together but painted differently.  I can’t show you all but here are a few…Peg draws Mark, Mark paints Peg…

and this one is Peg’s self portrait which won a prize in the State Fair Show of 1966…Juror?  Carl Hall.

Clarke’s self portrait in a plaid shirt

Clarke:

Coe:

and this deeply deeply sad portrait Coe painted of daughter Karin and grand daughter Ava as Karin’s son Marcus lay dying …

and here’s Peg today, still painting, still traveling, still loving her family and her life

and reminding us with each painting to live in our moments…ALL of them, and love where we live.  Mark’s Wigwam burners (and you don’t see these anymore)…

Oh…and then the gallery next door is the little Morris Graves gallery hung just now with drawings that came from a big trunk of Graves’ drawings that then Museum director Wallace Baldinger bought for a song…these were chosen by artist Keith Achepohl for exhibit and this wall was my favorite…Achepohl chose work from the museum’s collection of Marris Graves with the thematic of “vessels”…(with curator Danielle Knapp in the foreground)

We then stepped into the very amazing and beautiful Keith Achepohl exhibit “Vision of Nature: Vessel of Beauty” which just opened on January 20th and runs through April 29th.  Achepohl died last Saturday of pancreatic cancer at age 83, but he was fully in the moment with friends and family and admirers for the opening last month.  The vibrancy of the exhibit is at odds with the gravity of the moment, but the work is beautiful and now begins the next part of it’s life.  Some of this work was made when Achepohl was in residence at the Morris Graves Foundation Residency at the Lake in northern California in 2011, some was made in his Eugene studio, a few paintings were painted in December and January just in time to be included in the exhibit.  Work on paper pinned to the wall with specimen pins, collage, and the stunning oil on canvas paintings hanging on a simple dowel much in the way quilts are hung…the work of curating and hanging this show is a work of art of another sort.  I’m running out of words so we’ll just move to the images.  I’m hoping a trip to Eugene is possible for some of you this spring.

By now we were exhausted but exhilarated so we made our farewells and thank yous, headed to our wonderful parking space were we found a bit of something on the ground…it was regional art I believe…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

9 Comments

  1. After staying up late it is so very pleasant to relive the afternoon with you, Roger and Danielle through this wonderful blog. Thanks Bonnie.

    1. Thanks to you Peg for the gift of telling your stories in paint, and then in person…a real treat for us to hear first hand. The museum looked handsome and the work of the preparator was fantastic…showing your beautiful work to best advantage. xo

  2. Always feel that the outdoors is going to rush in the very next second looking at Carl Hall’s figure paintings. So much energy and movements with that laborious painting technique.

  3. caught the crud & it’s a doozy, but when i recover we intend to retrace your art afternoon in eugene . thank you for the many wonderful photos and text to go along. best medicine!

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