Friday, April 10, 2015

Childe Hassam silhouette - Nocturne, Railway Crossing

My classroom has no windows, although I can see light from across the hall through my doorway.... small consolation some days.  I have filled my classroom with visual interest, posters the students have made, art posters, a word wall, etc, etc... and my Smartboard which arrived this year.  Everyday, I choose an image or two to grace the Smartboard when I am not using it for academics.  It has great resolution.  I have displayed Calder wire faces, Eric Carle's joy, Homer, Sargent, Sorolla, today a Paul Rand, illustration... vivid, powerful, deceptively simple genius.   

Seems this winter, now spring, we have seldom seen the sun, and in fact, this mid-week of April, it was dreary and cold and drizzly, and enough is enough.  So, I called on Childe Hassam for a "wow the rain is beautiful" image, and here's what I got.  "Nocturne, Railway Crossing Chicago" from 1892.  Suddenly, the gray day that merges into a gray night, is not so dreary...  I am mesmerized by the silhouettes and tonalism in this quiet watercolor, and spent a little bit of time studying its gracious lines... what a masterpiece.   And, hey, the sun is coming out tomorrow!!


  1. The Smart Board appears to be a very useful addition to the classroom. I am glad to learn of this technology. I have been retired 16 years and although the Smart Board did not exist, I think it would have been very useful addition to my Art Classroom.

    Keep up the good work. I enjoy seeing the Class Art Projects that you share. Evidence that you are a very fine Art Teacher.

    I'm curious since the Smart Board is a relative expensive budget item and your school is Project Based; do you receive any funding from the Bill Gates Foundation that would provide this type of technology expenditure?

    1. William, thank you for your thoughtful comment. I will certainly look into the Gates Foundation.

  2. That painting is just stunning, Jody! Of course, I'm biased because it is Chicago...but the palette, the darkness and light...the horse...gorgeous! Who needs a window when you look at beautiful art all day!

  3. it is a wonderful painting and your sketch is, of course, fabulous!!

  4. Isn't it an amazing painting, great use of the transparent medium and temperature. Love it.