Tips for a Sunday Painter: Part Two

By Melissa Brown / August 30, 2018

It was because of visiting the trails around the State Line Look Out in the Alpine, NJ Palisades that my Sunday painting practice took center stage in my work. Even though I was born near the Hudson Palisades, I had never visited the state park until I had lived in Brooklyn for over ten years.…

Ellen Altfest – Painter de la Résistance

By Melissa Brown / August 15, 2018
Art Education Ellen Altfest

For many years, Ellen Altfest has held a position in my mind as a hero – or more accurately, an anti-hero – of painting. The power in her work comes from its ability to grab attention without using any of the attention-grabbing tricks: they are modestly sized, contain no hot colors, and the subject matter…

Tips for a Sunday Painter

By Melissa Brown / July 28, 2018
Tip For Sunday Painter Melissa Brown One River School

Neither of my parents are artists, nor any of my extended family. There were no artists from generations past to which my artistic interests were compared, no inherited traits from a creative Aunt Clara. When I was a kid in the 80’s my father was working as an accountant. And yet…. despite his identification as…

Cynthia Carlson – Bending the Grid with Wit

By Melissa Brown / June 28, 2018

Cynthia Carlson was one of the star players in the Pattern and Decoration movement in New York City during the 1970s. For the un-initiated, the “P&D” movement was a reaction to the abstract schools in art of the 1960s – minimalism, late abstract expressionism, conceptual art, schools the P&D artists felt tended towards austerity, seriousness,…

Cynthia Carlson’s Grid Books – Unleashing Creativity with Shackles

By Melissa Brown / June 19, 2018

One might make the mistake of thinking that the flames of creativity are fanned by open-endedness, ultimate freedom, no rules, starting from scratch, tossing out the baby with the bathwater, bulldozing the metropolis so as to construct another one in its place according to a subconscious dreamscape, embodying your inner child, dragging your knuckles and…