| 20 May, 2012 14:20
As one crtic said, Burchfield lived (outwardly) a very prosaic life, a middle class existence in a Buffalo suburb where he and his wife raised 5 children. For a brief biographical sketch, see Burchfield's Bio.
Burchfield is emotionally my favorite of the group most of the time. Similarly to Emily Carr, I feel he "digs inside himself" and expresses a very strong and personal vision of his world.
In placing and comparing him within our group of 10 composers:
- Burchfield is only one of two, along with John Marin, who painted almost exclusively in watercolor
- Marin and Burchfield both used calligraphic markings as symbols
- Burchfield, along with Sargent and Marin, was also devoted to music. One of Burchfield's favorite composers: Dvorak. Can anyone guess a reason for their affinity?
Burchfield and Hopper were personal friends.
Again, I've tried to focus on a common thread among a small group of paintings posted below to discuss in class. My "starter list" for discussion to be added to in class:
- Burchfield painted dynamic paintings with limited use of color.
- He used calligraphic marks as symbols
- His nocturnal paintings still use the white of the paper
- Borrowing Danielle's description of "motion" in Emily Carr's paintings, do you see this in Burchfield's paintings? What connection to music does this possibly have?
- How does the use of symbols in painting relate to Whistler's "art for art's sake" and his use of abstract musical terms for titles?
Dawn in Early Spring
T.S. Eliot's "The Wasteland"––
|April is the cruellest month, breeding|
|Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing|
|Memory and desire, stirring|
|Dull roots with spring rain.|