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Heading to Rockland and then Castine - Painting the Maine Coast!

Morning Glare4x12 oil by Michael Chesley Johnson$175 unframed - Available I'm about to head down to Rockland, Maine, to teach a workshop for Coastal Maine Art Workshops. Although I've visited Rockland many times, I've never painted there, so I'm excited to paint this part of the Maine coast. Show More Summary

Images: Becky Brown, Annette Cords, and accidental poetry

According to the press release for “Cognition-Stroll,” a collaborative exhibition on view at Project:ARTspace that features Annette Cords and Becky Brown , “cognition-stroll” is a literal English translation of the German compound word Erkenntnisspaziergang,...Show More Summary

Art and Film: Ghost as witness

Contributed by Jonathan Stevenson / George Eliot said, wisely, that “our dead are never dead to us, until we have forgotten them.” For the great and infamous, it’s a prescription for immortality. As to more ordinary people, the sentiment can be cloyingly anodyne around the moment of a loved one’s death – it was viciously … read more... "Art and Film: Ghost as witness"

Two Coats Selected Gallery Guide / July 10, 2017

Our mid-summer selected exhibitions list, organized by neighborhood, is, well, blooming with group shows that feature flowers, gardens, and nature. For those of you who are out of town, perhaps tending your own patch of land or painting at one of those fantastic artists’ residencies upstate, links are included for online browsing. Show More Summary

An artist’s legacy

Contributed by Sharon Butler / Estate planning for artists is complex, but Ellsworth Kelly, who died at 92 in December 2015, seems to have considered his legacy carefully. The artist contributed artwork to museums around the world. During a recent trip to Philadelphia, I had a chance to see a grouping of early paintings, many … read more... "An artist’s legacy"

A Few Paintings from the Week

Quoddy Head9x12 oil by Michael Chesley JohnsonSOLD I can't believe both Canada Day and Independence Day have come and gone. Where's the summer going? It's been awhile since I posted, so I thought I'd share some paintings from this past week, which marked the start of my plein air painting workshop season in Lubec, Maine. Show More Summary

Unlimited: Painting and political upheaval

Contributed by Sharon Butler / During the 1960s, the world was rocked by massive political upheaval. In May 1968, two weeks of student riots in Paris blasted traditional approaches seemingly across the socio-political board, from government to gender roles to education. Show More Summary

Art and politics: “Broad Stripes and Bright Stars” in New Haven

Aicha Woods and Dave Coon have co-curated “Broad Stripes and Bright Stars,” a thoughtful group exhibition on view at the Ely Center of Contemporary Art through August 13 that focuses how artists are using the American flag as image, object, and symbol. Show More Summary

How to Become a Better Painter

Field of Lupines9x12 oilMichael Chesley Johnson$200 unframed - available How to become a better painter? Practice—with a series of exclamation points following—is the obvious answer. But you can't just flail away at the canvas with a loaded brush and expect to improve. Show More Summary

Art and Film: Not so simple folk (art)

Contributed by Jonathan Stevenson / According to Aisling Walsh’s irrepressibly winning Maudie (2016), Maud Dowley, plagued by juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, was through no fault of her own a high-maintenance sibling whom an impatient older brother deposited with a mean aunt. Show More Summary

Quick study

LINKS: Casualism in Puerto Rico, Kurt Cobain’s paintings, legislation to ease student loan debt for artists, an interview with Brian Belott, artists recommend books, Tatiana Berg picks shows in London, Saul Ostrow on Antoni Tàpies, the best artist-published art blogs, and Franz West’s estate. Show More Summary

Catalogue essay: Raphael Rubinstein on Drew Shiflett

Raphael Rubinstein wrote the following essay,  “Eccentric Modularity,” on the occasion of Drew Shiflett’s elegant solo show of new collage pieces, on view through June 30, at Lesley Heller Workspace in New York. —— I wonder when the great variety of process entered the field of art. Show More Summary

Email: Daniel Wiener on art in fiction

Daniel Wiener, who recently presented exceptional new work in “Doubled,” a two-person show at Studio 10 in Bushwick, sent a note in response to our summer fiction series. “Lately it seems that art and artists have been appearing more...Show More Summary

Two Coats Selected Gallery Guide / June 19, 2017

Our late-June selected exhibitions list is organized by neighborhood, and for those of you who are at your friends’ beach shack on the shoreline or stuck in a rustic cabin with the kids, I hope you have decent connectivity, because links are included for online browsing. Show More Summary

Going from Oil Field Sketch to Studio Pastel

Passage 24x18 pastel by Michael Chesley Johnson Available The other day, I wrote about taking a pastel sketch made in the field and using it as a reference for a studio oil painting. This time, I want to address the reverse. EarlierShow More Summary

Medrie MacPhee: Flat-out at Tibor de Nagy

Contributed by Sharon Butler / Medrie MacPhee’s new paintings, on view at Tibor de Nagy (recently relocated to shared space with Betty Cuningham on the Lower East Side) feature sewing notions and fabric pieces—zippers, pockets, buttons, facings, sleeves, and so forth—all harvested from cheap, disassembled clothing. Show More Summary

Art and Film: The life and death of a cinephilic boomtown

Contributed by Jonathan Stevenson / A somewhat film-nerdy set of historical facts gave rise to found-footage maven Bill Morrison’s extraordinarily artful and expansive documentary Dawson City: Frozen Time. Dawson City, Yukon Territory,...Show More Summary

When do artists leave?

Contributed by Sharon Butler / On Wednesday, MarketWatch, a financial blog published by the Dow Jones company, ran a provocative piece suggesting that the time might be approaching for Americans to begin planning an exit strategy from Trumplandia. Show More Summary

Going from Pastel Field Sketch to Studio Oil

The June 2017 of The Artist's Magazine features my article on greens for the oil painter ("Going Green(s): Tubed and Mixed"). In the article, I show an oil demonstration in which I use just about every green from Gamblin I could layShow More Summary

Giant of the Valley: A Commission

"Giant of the Valley"12x24 oil by Michael Chesley Johnson I lived among the rolling hills and farms of Vermont's Champlain Valley for many years. Back in those days, I was a runner, and I enjoyed a variety of scenery in every town IShow More Summary

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