of Fine Art
Dibble, Harrison Groutage, Farrell Collett
by William Rowe
I was asked to do an article on us “old school” artists
for 15 BYTES. I certainly qualify, having recently rushed right
through age eighty-three. Can’t really say I’m qualified though
to be in the same class as these artists of whom I write.
I am a retired Architect, an artist, and do freelance
writing. During the years of architectural practice it was
my great pleasure to enjoy the friendship and tutoring of several
artist friends. There is not space to mention all of them so please
allow me to concentrate on only three of the very great: George Dibble,
Harrison Groutage, and Farrell Collett. I was, and am, close friends with
them and will recount stories of experiences I enjoyed as I worked and
learned from each of them. There are so many resumes, books, and
articles on these three that I shan’t go into detail.
Architecture was my profession. Art became
my escape from the pressures of budgets, school boards, and standing
nose to nose with contractors. Watercolor fascinated me.
Problem here was my need to learn all the innate skills of mixing
colors, loading and drawing with a brush as one chases paint across
Arches, buckling and crawling away from the water.
GEORGE S DIBBLE
A favorite I used to enjoy every Sunday was George Dibble’s art section
in the Salt Lake Tribune. Anyone who read and enjoyed his Tribune
articles soon became fascinated with watercolor. In the preface
of his book, Watercolor – Materials and Techniques, he wrote, “To
serve the needs and interests of my many students and fellow artists
whose search for the methods and techniques that will strengthen their
creative abilities.” In that one sentence is an introduction to
a fine gentleman and a great artist.
"Cedar Breaks No.2" used by permission of the Dibble family
In one of Dibble’s
workshops, I was struggling with my pallet of mud. He stood watching
and commented, “Young man you need help.” I sure did. That was
the beginning of a long and delightful friendship with George Dibble.
I became a devoted fan and started experimenting with the water medium
-- probably mixed a half tub of mud bbefore I started getting a measure
of control over mixing colors. The next and even more difficult task
was learning to draw with a brush. “Load your brush and touch the paper
with the point,” Dibble would say.
My determination was to master this crazy paint. This
paint that goes every which way as it is absorbed into the paper
or glazes the surface and uses the white of the paper to establish
value. It both fascinated and frustrated me. I went to Park City several
times with Dibble or Harrison Groutage to sketch and rough out
watercolors of the fantastic old homes and commercial buildings
from Park City's mining days. One of the watercolors I am especially
proud of is my Back Alley Park City, which I did on site with comments
and critiques by Dibble.
Finally, with a lot of help from him, I got watercolor
somewhat under control so I wanted to try oil. Most of my first
efforts with oil left me with more paint on my arms or shirt than
on the canvas. I soon learned that the water medium sure is easier
to clean up after painting.
35 x 35
A new generation of artists
by Nance Thunell
Artists of Utah's inaugural exhibition, 35 x 35, opens Friday December 20th with an artist reception and holiday party at the Artspace Forum Gallery in Salt Lake City. 35 x 35 is a unique exhibition, dispalying the works of thirty-five Utah artists thirty-five years or younger.
For some of the participating artists this will be their first exhibition opportunity, while others are well-established young artists quickly attracting attention locally and nationally.
Exhibition Reviews - Salt Lake City
Utah exhibitions during the holidays
by Kasey Boone
It's December, which means that all along the Wasatch Front they are packing them in the malls and on the walls.
While masses of frenzied consumers sandwich themselves between Old Navy and Barnes & Noble, gallery owners are busy packing as much art as possible on their walls. December is the month of group holiday shows that prove that as much as Art may try to hold itself up as something pristine, it too must bow to the demands of a shopping season that begins some time after Labor Day. It seems everyone thinks they will cash in on consumerized Christmas by providing small, "affordable" art at December holiday shows. As if you're going to slip a paining into Aunt Edna's stocking.
Usually December is one of the few times a year you get to take a peek at the 100 plus artists that Phillips Gallery
represents and who usually lie hidden within the basement. While under normal circumstances Phillips is one of the best galleries for treating art as art - they actually hang shows and give art room to breathe -- the holidays change everything. The salon style, a euphemism for stacking paintings, sneeks in - which is why we actually get to see so many of their artists. This year, however, Phillips took one step further towards caving in to the demands of of a consumer market with their "Over the Sofa" show. They marketed their exhibition as an "installation" piece but all that was installed were some couches, brightly colored walls and presumably the mailing lists of the six decorators invited to create the show.
The A gallery's holiday showing is wall-to-wall, but this is nothing new for this gallery. The A gallery
seems to be doing a lot of business lately, and what's more, they are deispalying a lot of fine art. Overall, there seems a very decorative feel to the works at A gallery. Many of them share a common palette that is bright without being garish. The pieces they hang deserve the attention ofsome decent space around them - something they don't get anytime of the year. But if you stop to ask yourself what the gallery would not have shown to display some individual pieces better, it is hard to argue with their plan.