'Mystic Jungle' and others by Dennis McGonagle

by Robin Schroeder 6. August 2009 07:12
Dennis McGonagle has recently completes a new series of paintings featuring views of the Huntington Library Jungle Garden.
In the artist's own words:

"I have recently completed six landscapes featuring views of the Huntington Library Jungle Garden. Like Henri Rousseau, whose visits to the zoo and botanical gardens in Paris resulted in dreamlike scenes of tropical Mexico, my visits to the Huntington have inspired a series of images of a primeval world.

The paintings were painted on the site in the cool mornings before the Huntington opened its doors to the public. I employed optical blending and an expressionist palette in order to communicate the experience of painting by the singing waterfalls.

Mystic Jungle is the largest of the works and it features a close up view of the upper waterfall. In the center of the composition sits a large, green, moss-covered stone, the result of the endless shower from the cascading falls. Like some sort of water god, the stone exuded a mystical presence." Mystic Garden Bachante
For more information, please visit Dennis McGonagle's website: www.McGonagleStudio.com

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'Golden Time' by Dennis McGonagle

by Robin Schroeder 31. July 2009 23:30
Dennis McGonagle has been painting landscapes and murals in Whittier, California since 1975. You can see more of his work at his website: http://www.mcgonaglestudio.com Dennis McGonagle
In the artist's own words: "I call this painting Golden Time because it is being painted in the late afternoon when the last rays of the sun come dancing across the lawn. It's a wonderful time to paint a neighborhood scene. The neighbors are out walking their babies and dogs. Billowing clouds come drifting by. A cool breeze blows the leaves down the street.
I like the sensory bombardment that comes when I do plein air painting. The shifting light, the random sounds coming from houses and cars, the conversations with people that pass by on the sidewalk. All of these elements find their way into the painting.
The painting itself is like a visual diary, a series of moments. I notice something different in the landscape every time I come there. One day it will be the play of light on a fence, the next day I will focus on the color contrast between bricks and grass.
This is the first in a series of landscapes I have planned for Whittier. For inspiration, I am looking to George Bellows, John Sloan, and the Ashcan School. I am also mixing in the American Scene paintings of Edward Hopper and Charles Burchfield for good measure.
I am guided by the advice of James Doolin for the composition, who said, "My paintings need to be strong on the abstract level, clear on the descriptive level, and mysterious on the narrative level."

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