"Edgar Degas from Paris, France
painted pictures of people who loved to dance."
In elementary school, each art movement and artist we studied was encapsulated with a short poem to reiterate the artists motif(s). The poems were a mnemonic device device to reinforce memory of each artist, and though I believe the Impressionist were studied in the first half of primary school, nearly 15 years later, I can still recite the first verse for Degas. (I remember we had corresponding poems for Cezanne and Cassat, but unfortunately those limericks have escaped me.)
I enjoy art, but I can't say I'm privy to spending money or time staring at stark canvases with abstract shapes or splotches of paint scattered about. I'm very traditional in my art taste, and the thick brush strokes of the Impressionist are closest to my heart. I'm not sure if I knew of Monet and my preference for Impressionism prior to my family's 1998 trip to France, but 12 years after visiting Giverny, Monet's home outside of Paris, I can still vividly recall stepping back and forth in front of the Water Lillies painting, admiring the definition from afar and the coarse strokes up close.
What I love about the Impressionist is the depiction of ordinary people, places or things that are transformed into rustic yet elegant capsules of time through the bold colors and abrupt brush strokes. There is no "message" an artist is trying to purvey through ambiguous hues and shapes. It is honest, pure and tranquil.
Tomorrow night I'll be visiting the Impressionist Exhibit at the de Young Museum in Golden Gate Park, and couldn't be more excited for the evening. Though I was disappointed with the Tut exhibit at de Young, I'm looking forward to browsing some of favorite Monet's- especially the Water Lillies that I haven't seen in person since I was just shy of 11.