Tuesday, June 14, 2022

Art Review - "Return at Night" by Frank Tenney Johnson

Last week, I shared a rare watercolor by artist Frank Tenney Johnson, so for this week's #MuseumTourTuesday let's take a look at one of his more traditional oil paintings, also featured in the "Sons of Charlie Russell: Cowboy Artists of America" exhibit at the Briscoe Western Art Museum.

This piece features an excellent contrast in both colors and textures. The textural paint qualities of the rocks and figure stand in stark contrast to the smooth paint of the sky, and yet the two areas are connected by the small spot of orange used as a compliment to the blue of the sky. Also of note is that there are very few sharp edges in the painting. Notice how the legs of the horse almost disappear into the background. To direct the eye, the artist uses value contrast, as in the case of the white of the horse versus the deep dark of the shadows, to push our attention to the horse and rider.

This is just one of many great paintings in the show, and I'll share a few more in the weeks to come. The exhibition runs through September 5th.

"Return at Night" • Frank Tenney Johnson • Oil on Canvas
• 24" x 30" • 1938

Painting photo by Saunders Fine Arts.

© Patrick and Kimberly Saunders, Patrick Saunders Fine Arts, 2022. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s authors/owners is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Patrick Saunders for painted works, or to Kimberly Saunders for photographs and/or videos, with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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