Art Intrigues

Making Her Mark, Women Artists of the Providence Art Club, 1880

Poster w rosa portrait.001

Historic Rhode Island women artists are getting their due in March at the Providence Art Club. 1880 was a critical year for the founding of the Providence Art Club and six women founders help paved the way for professional women artists in the state.

Cathy @ 9:07 pm

Tagged in: Art Intrigues

The unsigned painting?


The unsigned painting? Sometimes you see such a horrible painting you wish the artist did not sign it. Then you come across a gem like this wooden fishing craft beached near summer cottages and think – why did the artist not sign this? The mystery…it is on board maybe they were painting on location and when they got back to the studio forgot to sign? Did they not think it worthy? Only a sketch? We will never know….

Cathy @ 8:52 pm

Tagged in: Art Intrigues,Attic Sale

“Shakespeare Head in Winter”- a Providence Landmark


Hope Smith ( 1879 – 1965) enjoyed painting winter scenes from her studio window.  This painting of the historic “Shakespeare Head” building on a snowy day in Providence, RI.  It actually makes you re-connect with the joys of the winter season.

Tucked away painting from the window of her North Main Street Studio, Hope Smith would not realize that her posterity as a Rhode Island artist would be made on her painted records of a fast disappearing and developing Providence. She cherished painting urban and rural scenes and this affection and integrity shines through all of the pieces of this subject matter. It is for these pieces that she is best remembered.

Hope Smith was one of the first graduates of the Mary C. Wheeler School in 1898. She then studied at Rhode Island School of Design, at the Julian School in Paris and under Woodbury Chase. It was in a 1916 Providence Art Club Show that her artistic talent was confirmed as she won praise from the Providence Journal art critic. He commented ” This group [of paintings] is far ahead of anything this young artist has yet shown, and entitles her to serious consideration.” He went on to say that, “This show was one of the most interesting and compelling exhibitions.”

The artist was a consistently strong painter who during her lifetime progressed logically in her artistic development. She has been identified by the art critic, Bradford Swan, as ” a spiritual heir of the Impressionists” who concentrated in her work on outdoor light. She had a strongly developed esthetic sense and her works were representative or realistic only on a superficial level. More specifically her painting reflected an internal vision, a private view of what she saw. While oil was the medium she primarily concentrated on, she exclusively worked in watercolors for two years, 1928-1930, in order that she could gain a freshness and surity in handling oils. It is in oils that her technical dexterity and ability to depict subtle shadings of light and color were admired.

An avid traveler, Hope Smith painted from Providence to China and in and around New England. During her lifetime she exhibited at the Pennsylvania Academy, Boston Art Club, Providence Art Club, South County Art Association and the Newport Art Association. She was a member of the Providence Art Club and the South County Art Association.

Cathy @ 6:36 pm

Tagged in: Art Intrigues

Vitullo Photographs Continue to Intrigue



November 7, 2016 – January 6, 2017
1950 – 2000
Gallery Night Reception November 17, 5 – 9pm.

Four photographs of Carmel Vitullo are included in the upcoming exhibition – organized by URI Feinstein Gallery, the Rhode Island Historical Society and Providence Inner City Arts/Roots Cultural Center. It celebrates the impact of many area artists over the course of fifty years, some who are the product of RISD, RIC and URI and others who were drawn to this creative center long  before it was called the Creative Capital.

Vitullo’s vintage image from 1952 of the Providence River looking out at the Point Street Bridge is included.

Cathy @ 4:11 pm

Tagged in: Art Intrigues,Art Market

Head-dress Obsession


The Dutch take their head-dress very seriously. There is even a Dutch Costume Museum in Amsterdam. But the 19th Century American obsession with the costume piece is amazing. Here Oscar Miller (1867- 1921) paints a diligent dutch girl working on her knitting in her quaint hat, scarf, head-dress…whatever.

American artists must have found quite a market for these scenes or were nostalgic for their study days abroad? We will never know why so many artists painted the women in their head-dress but come and see first hand the “Dutch Mother Knitting” on view at the gallery.




Cathy @ 5:47 am

Tagged in: Art Intrigues