Oil and Wax, 12 x 16 inches
The Elemental series of paintings depicts points of land in raging, stormy weather with rough seas. There is nothing peaceful about these scenes, but a sense of dread and awe at the power of nature. They are meant to be disturbing, immersive and dark. The storm is just clearing as the sun has set. The waves in the foreground are large, implying a low, close-to-the-water perspective adding a sense of drama. There is movement everywhere, but nowhere for the eye to rest…much like the real-life experience itself.
“I studied the art of the ancients and that of the moderns using no systematized approach and without preconceived ideas. I no more wanted to imitate the former than I sought to copy the latter… I wanted to draw from the entire body of tradition a rational, independent sense of my own individuality. To know in order to create—this was my purpose.” – Gustave Courbet (1819-1877)