Our June Curator's Choice is a warm, abstracted landscape by Colorado-based artist, Ken Elliott, titled Tangerine Evening II. With an almost impressionistic style that features light dabs of paint and fleeting light, this ultra warm and vibrant piece screams "Here comes the sun," which we are obviously also screaming this first official week of summer. Read on to learn all about this painting and just why it's our painting of Choice.
What It's About
At it's core, Tangerine Evening II formed from the intention to create a sense of space, conveying a feeling rather than a rendering. "Coming across this scene, I was drawn to the challenge of creating a painting with very little in the way of composition, making its success dependent on other factors..." the artist says. "There was that sun of course, and it opened up a lot of opportunities, most of which I disregarded, rejecting realist options. Everything is pattern here, but in a non-descriptive way. The sky, land and water are expressed, not illustrated, which gives the artwork more power. The sky is not ‘accurately’ reflected in the rippling water. The pale sun illuminates everything in a subtle way, resulting in a sense that everything is fresh and alive."
Where It Works
Measuring 40" x 40" (41.5" x 41.5" framed), Tangerine Evening II is big enough to make a statement but small enough to fit in a wide variety of spaces. Not only that, but the bright, warm palette is actually more versatile than it may first appear. It can tie together like-color schemes, in rooms that feature pink, red, or orange hues. Alternatively, the tangerine tones would provide an eye-catching contrast in cooler blue spaces, especially on a deep or muted blue wall. And even a neutral space would benefit from a jolt of color like this - adding a pop that would match wood or white trim alike. We love it hung over a console table, an open wall in a dining room, or as a vibrant primary focus above a mantle.
Why We Love It
We love Tangerine Evening II for it's impressionistic style, but more than anything else - it's the color. With the Summer Solstice right behind us, this unique palette that incorporates deep red, salmon pink, vibrant orange and lavender gives us all the warm feels that come with this time of year. Gazing at this piece is like seeing a hazy memory of a summer sunset - perfectly rich and saturated, and almost like getting a big old hug from Mother Nature herself.
Ken Elliott is an abstract landscape artist based in Colorado, whose work is included in private collections internationally. His painting titled Light Moving Across, is on loan with the Art in Embassies program and is on display in an American Embassy abroad.
"My focus is the landscape and its rich store of ideas and inspiration," Ken says. "I am compelled to work from the trees, skies, lakes and streams in their endless variations. I don’t try to recreate nature (even Monet said he never got it right) or attempt storytelling. Instead, the works are simplifications and exaggerations of nature. There was a time when I felt the tyranny of the landscape - that is, I felt limited by making pictures of a place. Now, instead of making pictures, I am free to make paintings - art that comes from nature but is far more reliant on the strategies of making good art objects."