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James Lancel McElhinney ~ New York

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United States Capitol Historical Society, January 2018: "McElhinney is an independent scholar, visual artist, author, and oral historian. He earned an MFA in painting from Yale and has received numerous fellowships and grants, including a 2017 Pollock Krasner Grant and a grant from National Endowment for the Arts. … McElhinney regards his paintings as interventions, encountering the landschaft as a palimpsest of simultaneous narratives; terrain organized by memory and desire; shaped by human activity and conditioned by topography, climate, and the forces of nature."
   

O. T. W.
(on the Water)
The Schuylkill River
A Suite of Archival Digital Prints of Journal Paintings

By James Lancel McElhinney
New York: Needlewatcher Editions, 2018. Edition of 50.

14 x 11"; 9 sheets (7 prints, title page, colophon). Suite of seven (7) numbered, signed, and dated archival digital prints. Produced from original journal page-spreads of 3.5 x 10". Original images produced with archival permanent inks and aqueous media in watercolor sketchbooks. Loosely bound in a 14.5 x 12" cloth-covered Solander (clamshell) box. Accompanied by a descriptive chapbook. Composed of 100% archival materials.

James Lancel McElhinney, Waterway Dialogues: "Waterways have recently become the focus of my work. Inspired by 19th-century explorers and traveler-artists, my painting-practice migrated from the studio into sketchbooks carried on travels within the United States and abroad. ... Philadelphian friends invited me to revisit The Schuylkill. Having once been a local resident, the river to me at first seemed familiar. As work progressed, it became clear that I had much to learn.

"More than scenery, landscape is a projection of human desire, a palimpsest of conflicting systems of value, inscribed upon the terrain in ways that seek either to exploit or to preserve its natural resources, None are so fragile, nor so necessary to human well-being as watersheds; springs, wetlands, streams and rivers that water our farmlands and fill our reservoirs.

"Looking at something is not the same as seeing it. One can recognize many things without comprehending them. To understand landscape, one must know one's location, study the terrain, consider the process of nature and human activity that modifies terrain over decades, centuries, millennia and eons. Drawing provides me with the means to develop sensory experience into a species of knowledge, that gives rise to ideas. My hope is that this slim pamphlet, and the seven prints that accompany it, will inspire readers to explore their surroundings, terrain and waterways, to discover these wonders anew, perhaps with a sketchbook in hand."
$1,600

O.T.W. book
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Hudson Highlands
A Suite of Archival Digital Prints of Journal Paintings

By James Lancel McElhinney
New York: Needlewatcher Editions, 2017. Edition of 50.

14 x 11"; 9 sheets (7 prints, title page, colophon). Suite of seven (7) numbered, signed and dated archival digital prints. Produced from original journal page-spreads of 3.5 x 10". Original images produced with archival permanent inks and aqueous media in watercolor sketchbooks. Loosely bound in a 14.5 x 12" cloth-covered Solander (clamshell) box with blind embossed titles on lid. Accompanied by a descriptive chapbook. Composed of 100% archival materials. Signed and numbered by the artist.

James Lancel McElhinney, A Personal Journey: "Landscapes do not occur in nature., According to J. B. Jackson, they are created when people adapt terrain to their use. By extension, what we behold as a landscape is nothing more or less than a projection of personal desire. The visual echoes we receive, as pictures of terrain, are thus our own reflection.

"Stricken with a mysterious pulmonary illness, I was admitted on Veteran's Day 2005 to Columbia Presbyterian Hospital, where I remained for nearly a month. My future wife, Kathie Manthorne, brought me a set of watercolors and a New York Central linen sketchbook. A lounge at the end of the hall afforded spectacular views of the Jersey Palisades and the George Washington Bridge. Painting in the book for the first time, I suddenly realized that an open spread could replace a stretched canvas as the substratum for a fully developed painting. Following my discharge from the hospital, a newfound hypersensitivity to spirit vapors and oil paint caused me to shift my painting practice to aqueous media. Inspired by historic expeditionary art, my paintings migrated off the easel and into books during trips to Europe, Hawaii, ...

"Informed by historic narratives such as Robert Juet's 1609 journal about the journey of the Half-Moon and Benson J. Lossing's 'The Hudson from the Wilderness to the Sea', I completed roughly two hundred journal paintings in the Hudson River Valley. This suite of archival digital prints is the first in an ongoing series."
$1,500

 

Hudson Highlands book
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Page last update: 05.25.19

 

   
  
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