GREG SKOL & THE AMERICAN LANDSCAPE TRADITION

 

I have been aware of Greg Skol's work since 2000. As an historian of American art, I search for connections between current art and art of the past. I see this very clearly in Skol's paintings. As a connoisseur, I yearn to see the work in any art object. I also see this clearly in Greg Skol's paintings.

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Students and scholars of American landscape painting understand the relationship between painter and image. Thomas Cole, the "father" of the Hudson River School, never wanted his paintings to be seen as literal transcriptions of particular places. In fact, most of his field sketches were done in pencil, with color notes indicated by words, not color swatches. Furthermore, Cole insisted on allowing the "veil of time" to soften the edges of his memories of a site. Picking up the baton from Cole and showing the influence of the French Barbizon movement, George Inness and Bruce Crane espoused landscapes that suggest a sense of place but also evoked an emotional response in the viewer.

Greg Skol's paintings are inseparable from these American Landscape traditions. Consequently, the artist constructs a solid foundation of art history on which to build his own paintings. Skol's refusal to deny the precedents for his work only serves to strengthen the importance of his vision.

-- Michael Grauer, Curator of Art ~Panhandle-Plains Museum / West Texas A&M University; Canyon, TX

From the catalogue "Under a Changing Sky"
Solo exhibition at the Longview Museum of Art, Longview TX
Curated by Renee Hawkins, Director, LMFA