Folk Art

Outsider Art, Overview

Self Taught & Outsider Art Overview

Throughout history there have been artists who created without the benefit of formal training. However, for many centuries, the dominance of the European art academies obscured the work of these self-taught artists, who were judged to be inept and inferior. Only at the dawn of the 20th century, when artists began to rebel against the academies, did self-taught art suddenly receive serious attention from the mainstream art-world. Artists like Picasso and Kandinsky felt that trained artists were inevitably corrupted by their schooling, and that self-taught artists were purer and potentially greater.

After World War II, in an attempt to repudiate a “civilization” that had spawned the Holocaust, the artist Jean Dubuffet invented the ideal of Art Brut (“raw art”)–an art untainted by any trace of received culture. This concept, translated as “Outsider Art” by Roger Cardinal in the first English-language book on the subject, gradually took root in the United States. Here, the term “Outsider Art” is often used interchangeably with “self-taught” to denote any art produced outside of academia.

By |December 30th, 2011|Art Brut, Folk Art, Outsider Art|0 Comments

Church Street Art Main Site Re~designed

Church Street Art Main Site Re~designed

Come visit us at our redesigned website!

Church Street Art Gallery
34 Church Street,
Lenox, MA 01240

By |September 30th, 2011|Art Brut, Folk Art, Outsider Art|0 Comments

Folk Art: The Direction the Wind is Blowing in the Art World

On Saturday, May 26th the Church Street Art Gallery presents an exhibit devoted to American Folk Art, a rich and often-misunderstood art form. We’ll be presenting a fascinating and exciting assemblage of some of the best examples of Folk Art. It’s an exhibit whose breadth reaches beyond the ubiquitous weathervanes one expects to see.

Over the last century, experts and passionate collectors of Folk Art have made great strides in separating the ordinary from the extraordinary, creating standards for what seems on the surface to be naive and untrained. Folk artists are largely self-trained, and always have set out on a personal and unique path to express themselves. Their work is often considered â€primitiveness€ in execution and technique. But the works on display at the Church Street Art Gallery make the point that these artists share a rare gift of being able to communicate excitingly and vividly the passions and obsessions that caused them to create art in the first place.

It’s always exciting to see how ingenious these artists are in their use of everyday objects and in their unique styles of painting. One of the most familiar examples in the 20th century are the paintings of Grandma Moses. With her deceptively simple use of space and subject matter she created storytelling moments of her life in pastoral New England.

Works by artists who are becoming recognized as outstanding talents are often commanding the kind of prices only the best works of traditional art once commanded. A small painted folk art carving of a heart and hand, sold at auction in 2003 for $79,500. Probably the most famous of all American folk paintings, The Peaceable Kingdom was painted in multiples by the Pennsylvania Quaker Edward Hicks. The […]

By |April 27th, 2007|Folk Art, Folk Artists, Outsider Art|0 Comments