“Shakespeare Head in Winter”- a Providence Landmark

December 13, 2016

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

“Greenery” Color of the Year

December 11, 2016

Pantone just identified its Color of the Year – and it is called “Greenery”.


Upon a quick review of my 2016 Holiday Inventory, Pantone has made a very safe choice in its color selection. After all, what landscape does not have even a hint of “greenery”? Our best example is the mysterious Exene Meyersahm (1886 – 1978), RISD graduate and productive Barrington, RI artist who has gone off the radar for many collectors but deserves some mention.

Cathy @ 5:27 am

Tagged in: Art Market

The Charming Mr. Burleigh

December 9, 2016

Sydney Burleigh (1853 – 1931) is one of the most intriguing figures in 19th century Rhode Island both as an artist and art activist.  He is referenced in nineteen publications with the most notable mention in : Masterworks of American Impressionism from the Pfeil Collection by W.H. Gerdts, 1992.

One of his watercolors is on view in the current exhibition – Woman Sewing – a prime example of his mastery of watercolor. ( Presidential portrait of S.R. Burleigh from the collection of the Providence Art Club).  Find out more about the “Arts and Crafts talent”,  Burleigh, in our biography section.



Cathy @ 4:58 am

Tagged in: Art Market

Old Favorites In 2016 Holiday Selections

December 5, 2016

Old favorites in the Rhode Island and American Art scene headline the December 6th opening of “2016 Holiday Selections” at Bert Gallery. Of particular note is a small collection of Eliza Gardiner (1871 – 1955) color woodcut prints. Gardiner is a nationally recognized color woodcut artist who attended RISD (Rhode Island School of Design, Providence, RI) graduating in 1897. She is one of the early women artist pioneers.

Cathy @ 4:59 am

Tagged in: Art Market

2016 Holiday Collections coming soon…

November 28, 2016

2016 Holiday Selections, opens at the gallery from December 6 and runs through December 23, 2014. For the month of December, extended Bert Gallery Hours are Monday – Saturday, 12pm – 5pm. Closing Friday, December 23rd at 5pm for Christmas Holiday. Free parking is available on the street in front of the gallery. Exhibits are free and open to the public.

The Holiday catalogues are already out with an array of consumer goods to satisfy any gift giver. In the midst of this retail competition, Bert Gallery suggests you give a “Gift of Art”, a simple personal gift of a painting, etching, photograph or sculpture that is not mass produced but rather a creative visual marker. A gift selection that is individual, risky and subjective.

The paintings on exhibit are arranged across two rooms with affordable prices. All media are included and works date from 1876 – 2016. Most works are Historic American painters from Rhode Island and varying artist estates.

Cathy @ 7:56 pm

Tagged in: Art Market

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