Pastels ~ Art History ~ Major Artists ~ Highly Visual 176 Slides ~ Pastel Art
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This is a powerpoint presentation about Pastels and Art History. These are the major artists from 1826 who used pastels. It is amazing how many major artists do have works in pastel. To best assess this presentation, download the preview, which contains 16 actual slides. The thumbnails show another 4 slides. This listing contains text excerpts, below. In all, there are 176 highly visual slides.
Excerpt 1: BULLET POINT OVERVIEW
~ art medium in the form of a stick
~ originally this referred to the stick consisting of pure powdered pigment and a binder.
~ present day that has expanded to include oil pastel sticks and water soluble pastels.
~ although around for a very long time, they became popular in the 1800s, when a number of leading artists excelled with the pastel medium.
~ those artists include Edgar Degas, Mary Cassatt, Odilon Redon and others.
~ soft pastels are the most widely used pastel. These sticks have a higher portion of pigment and less binder.
~ related products to the soft pastels are pan pastels, hard pastels, and pastel pencils. This array makes everything from fine lines to broad swaths easier to apply with pastels.
~ oil pastels have a soft, buttery consistency with intense colors; oil like in consistency whereas soft pastels are chalk like in consistency.
~ water-soluble pastels: colors can be thinned to an even, semi-transparent consistency using a water wash; closest pastel to watercolor.
~ the surface pastels are applied to is typically paper with a tooth to it.
there are specialty papers for pastels, such as velour papers.
~ to make these finished artworks permanent and archival, there are recommended standards for conservation.
~ these include using acid free paper; not letting the glass of the frame touch the art work; using a fixative (for some pastels but not for others) and other standards.
~ if errors are made in the painting, it is much harder to cover that error than it is in painting with a medium like oil paint.
~ pastel painting and drawing does share many of the same techniques as other painting and drawing but also has its own unique properties.
~ soft pastels create a lot of dust which can enter the artist’s lungs. Safety equipment may need to be used.
~ an artist in the 21st century will typically find the pastel paintings from 1800 forward of the most use in developing his or her talent.
~ this presentation focuses on the artists’ work of that time period.
EXCERPT 2: Why Use PASTELS?
The starting question is why an artist would want to use pastels instead of painting with oil, watercolor or acrylic. The answer to this question varies on the artist in question. Let’s look at a few.
For Edgar Degas, he was painting figures in motion: dancers; racehorses and their jockeys; and women in all stages of taking a bath. When he painted a stiller subject, he often did go back to using oil paints with a brush. It is very easy to carry around pastels and paper with you and then use them in just about any setting. He was doing his painting in theaters, women’s bedrooms and racecourses. Those would be difficult places to use an easel and oil paints.
Pastels dry quickly too. Oil paint does not. He would want to get down as much of the composition as he could right away. That is impossible with oil painting. Sitters can spend months posing for an oil painting.
Mary Cassatt, Degas’s student and friend, spent more and more time painting young children. They too are in constant motion. Speed becomes a high priority when trying to capture their moments.
Picasso and Henri Goetz told Sennelier, the paint manufacturer, their reasons: the immediacy of having the instrument of art right in your hand rather than extending from your hand in the form of a brush. It feels much more natural and freer. Plus there are no brushes to clean and no canvases to prime.
Manet was very ill in the last years of his life with the late stage complications of syphilis. If one is ill, one can also easily haul the pastels and paper onto a bed or sofa and work from there. Manet was having neurological effects so it also would have been easier to grasp a pastel than grasp and hold onto a brush. Standing before an easel for hours on end would have been impossible as he entered the last phase of his illness.
One thing is very evident after reviewing all the slides. These artists had a huge amount of talent. With such talent, switching from one medium to another is a technical problem which can be sorted out over time. The talent is still there as the artist approaches the new medium. It shows up strong as ever and leaves the artist with only his or her technical mistakes with using the new medium to resolve.
THE ARTISTS WHOSE PASTEL WORK IS SHOWN INCLUDE:
William Merritt Chase
R. B. Kitaj
James McNeill Whistler
THERE ARE ADDITIONAL ARTISTS SHOWN BUT I COULD FIND ONLY 1 OF THEIR WORKS, OR AT MOST 2. THESE INCLUDE: JACKSON POLLOCK, LUCIAN FREUD, PAUL CEZANNE, VINCENT VAN GOGH, AND OTHERS.