Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Richard Diebenkorn's Cityscape I

Ipad Rendering of Diebenkorn's Cityscape I, 1963

I've always felt a certain closeness to the work of Richard Diebenkorn. In my first year at the San Francisco Art Institute, Diebenkorn, who taught there, just died. Knowing nothing of him, I attended a kind of remembrance party for him and learned so much about the man and the painter. Students loved him, the other artist/professors loved him. It seemed to me that not only was he a great painter, but a great man.

Color is what I love most about his paintings. His color choices have such a strong feeling. Cityscape I, which is at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, is so obviously full of the colors of San Francisco. The grays, the whites, and especially the yellows. He captured the San Francisco palette perfectly.

Do you consciously or even unconsciously assign a color to the cities you've visited? For me, San Francisco is yellow ochre, Chicago is a rusty red, L.A is aqua (probably because of Hockney, ugh!), and New York City is dark gray.

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