eliminate and simplify

Dunes and Sea II, Milton Avery, 1960, Oil and Charcoal on Canvas, Collection of the Whitney Museum of Ar

“I like to seize on the  sharp instant in Nature, to imprison it by means of ordered shapes and space relationships. To this end I eliminate and simplify, leaving apparently nothing but color and pattern.  I am not seeking pure abstraction, rather the purity and essence of the idea – expressed in its simplest form”. – Milton Avery

Avery has always been a favorite. The current show at Yares Art Gallery (up until April 30) in New York is a  must see.  It’s a museum quality show in a gallery. I want to share a few images.

Untitled, 1930, Gouache on green paper

If it was only the dark voice of the sea
That rose, or even colored by many waves;
If it was only the outer voice of the sky
And cloud, of the sunken coral water-walled,
However clear, it would have been deep air,
The heaving speech of air, a summer sound
Repeated in a summer without end…
Wallace Stevens, “The Idea of Order at Key West”

Sails in Sunset Sea, 1960, Oil on Canvas 

We must learn to reawaken and keep ourselves awake, not by
mechanical aids, but by an infinite expectation of the dawn,  which
does not forsake us in our soundest sleep…It is something to be
able to paint a particular picture, or to carve a statue, and so to
make a few objects beautiful; but it is far more glorious to carve
and paint the very atmosphere and medium through which we
look, which morally we can do.  To affect the quality of the day, that
is the highest of the arts.” – Henry David Thoreau

Brown Sea, 1958, Oil on Canvas

“I try to construct a picture in which shapes, spaces, colors, form a set of unique relationships, independent of any subject matter.  At the same time I try to capture and translate the excitement and emotion aroused in me by the impact with the original idea.” – Milton Avery

White Horse, 1962, Oil on Canvas

“The idea is in my head to put it down is nothing.” – Milton Avery

Untitled, 1930, Gouache on Black Paper

Sea Grasses and Blue Sea, 1958, Oil on Canvas

“Why talk when you can paint.” – Milton Avery

Early Works on Paper
and Late Paintings
February 24 – April 30, 2018
Yares Art
745 Fifth Aven


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