Nancy Prophet talk on November 30th

November 12, 2017

Nancy Elizabeth Prophet is one of the important Rhode Island artists long forgotten. In 2014 I did a lecture on the artist at the Providence Athenaeum. This year, the lecture has been dusted off for another presentation at the “Stage of Freedom” venue in downtown Providence. Seating is very limited but the event is free so sign up and find out more on Nancy Elizabeth Prophet.

Historic Artist Lecture: Struggle, Strength and Dignity, Nancy Elizabeth Prophet (1890 – 1960)  by Catherine Little Bert

Thursday, November 30 @ 5:30 pm
Stages of Freedom 10 Westminister Street in downtown Providence
Registration required for this free event, call for details.

There were many obstacles for artists in America in the early 20th century but for an African American and a woman the challenges were momentous. Nancy Elizabeth Prophet (1890 – 1960) did not balk at discrimination and societal mores, she confronted them directly across all fronts – art training, European study, exhibition opportunities, awards and employment. These accomplishments did not come without great personal pain, sacrifice and isolation but the Rhode Island artist persevered and created some of the most remarkable sculpture in the early 20th Century documenting her legacy as an African American and as a woman.

Cathy @ 1:01 pm

Tagged in: Art Intrigues

Bygone cityscapes

November 8, 2017

Recent auctions of American art at Grogan and Company in Boston verify the continued interest in cityscapes of bygone eras. Arthur Clifton Goodwin (1864 – 1929) painting of the Boston common fetched a healthy $6,000 concluding bid.

The Providence School artist, Stacy Tolman (1860 – 1935), a close friendship or Arts and Crafts extraordinaire S.R. Burleigh, painted this Providence scene “View from the First Baptist Church”.  Tolman was very much in tune with the preferences of the local art collector and Goodwin, a fellow Boston art colleague.

Tolman is the MET collection.

Cathy @ 6:03 am

Tagged in: Painting of the Week

Abstract Art

November 4, 2017

I’m just back from the National Museum of Women in the Arts in Washington, DC where a powerful new exhibit, “Magnetic Fields” shows a number of black women artists who were committed to abstract art from the 1960’s to now.

The show is a reminder of the beauty of abstract art and layers of interpretation and visual intrigue.

Long time abstract artist Frank Gasbarro came to mind and how he also has explored abstraction his whole life. A particular favorite series of mine is his small monotypes.

A celebration of shape, form, color and line.

Cathy @ 5:21 pm

Tagged in: Reboot your eye for art

tips for purchasing art for your collection

October 26, 2017


Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas! We are all preparing for the
Fall and Winter holiday seasons. Getting organized for all of the festivities, I found this vintage article in Rhode Island Monthly about art collecting.

The opening intro…

“Deck the Walls…Bare walls be gone. Local gallery owners share their secrets on creating a museum-worthy (and budget friendly) collection at home.”

A timeless article about what to think about when buying art.

Just click on the following link!




Cathy @ 5:35 pm

Tagged in: Art Intrigues

A place for contemporary realism?

October 21, 2017

Bert Gallery is often approached with paintings that were purchased at a Providence Art Club exhibit and the estate often chooses to pass on those special works. This is the case in point of Jane Puerini a well respected and veteran Providence painter who exhibits at the Providence Art Club.

“Chinese Takeout” is an early work of Jane’s that was particularly meaningful to its owner, a frequent visitor of a neighborhood Chinese Restaurant. This oil on canvas is small ( 8″ x 10″) and available for  $500.

Sadly, contemporary realist painters are finding fewer venues to show their works. Thus, the critical role that the Providence Art Club plays in the community along with other non-profit organizations such as the Wickford Art Association and the Pawtucket Art Association.

Read more about Puerini from an old entry from the Royal Gallery on Atwells Ave in Providence. “Puerini paints from her home studio, arranging her subjects in natural light. She paints primarily with a monochromatic underpainting followed by subsequent layering of color, but also more directly on toned canvas. Jane strives to render her subjects faithfully but not photographically. Her work presents the viewer with a new vision of simple everyday objects that might otherwise be overlooked. Fine porcelain or Chinese takeout food are equally suitable subject matter. While her still life subjects offer seasonal diversity and a variety of thematic possibilities, composition, form, value, and color remain prime considerations.”

Cathy @ 6:26 am

Tagged in: Art Market

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