french escapism by scott richard
impressionism was a camera born idea.
the camera was inferior to the eye's ability and left things out.
this gave painters many lead-ins to see how they could do the same thing -- strategically choosing to leave out details or blur them from clarity.
the discovery that there is no true black in real life was also a huge shift in the color palette and led to the creation/extensive use of TONES.
tones are formed when you use gray to form the base of your mixing color instead of black (SHADES) and white (TINTS).
TONES give an ethereal 3 dimensional quality to a painting. there is the dreamy sense of distance and the truer illusion of light and source than any that can be created by using SHADES or TINTS.
TONES give the "millions of color" pixel effect compared to the thousands you can get with SHADES & TINTS.
but that's impressionism, the thought child of the photographer painter -- the artist who wanted to capture the subject and then recreate it like a poem.
and there were tons and tons of impressionists who were photographers.
photography was in its hey day in france in 1850, twenty years before monet began his career work in seriousness. so we can't act like the effect of the camera wasn't in full play.
so here's where monet went sideways in comparison to his competition.
monet figured using the new color palette he could manufacture all these great indoor-illuminating pieces. by using NO black to speak of, even so much as to use the lightest tones of grays to make his colors pop and shine, the subject matter of the luxury class on holiday would be something anybody would want in their house.
remember, electricity wasn't a common thing yet in french lifestyles. they were PRE-ELECTRIC lighting.
and he dives into this with a religious fervor.
and this is what i call french escapsim.
french escapism is the light-filled study of that which MAKES CULTURE SPECIAL. it is the food and the wine. it is the land and the cultivating of the land. it is the animals and the people who inhabit the land.
it is the openness of an unspoiled nature.
and it's really fun to paint.
my mother was in love with the classist narcissism of monet's french escapism. she could project herself into these landscapes and had monet copy prints nicely framed throughout her home like so many people do.
i've written about the PRINTING EMPIRE that is based on the CHURCH OF MONET.
but it wasn't so much MONET that people wanted, they wanted the the god who lived in the church of monet.
it was the greedy love and dream of the world he painted.
a place where everything was perfectly at ease and rest.
it was the DOWNTOWN ABBEY of the painting world.
a secret order with exact ordering.
a place where white dresses and umbrellas in the sun will always bob and weave on the hillsides and down by the beaches with the boats and the fishermen and the day's catch.
it's an endless holiday in the tamed countryside.