Thursday, November 5, 2009

New Cherry Pit Exhibit: Now Through December 20th

Sic Transit Gloria Mundi: The Vanitas Landscape Tom O’Brien

Tom O’Brien, according to his website, had never given much thought to painting landscapes. For him, they were simply an overdone expression of art. With the Vanitas show, O’Brien seems to have found a way to re-examine the traditional landscape. The title of his show is telling.

The Latin term Sic Transit Gloria Mundi translates to “thus passes the glory of the world.” The vanitas painting technique O’Brien referrers to started in the Netherlands in the early 17th century. Used by still-life painters, the vanitas was a symbolic gathering of food, human skulls, maps, globes, and other earthly possessions. These paintings were meant to call to mind “the inevitability of death and the transience and vanity of earthly achievements and pleasures…”[1].

O’Brien asks that the viewer inhabit his landscape, to feel alone in the sense of place, and find what emotions that brings forth for them. Perhaps, somewhere through these windows, one will experience the sense of humanity and transience O’Brien wished to share.

[1] November 2, 2009

Galleries will be open for the First Friday Art Walk, this Friday from 5-7pm. Come one, come all!

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