Arts come in different aspects such as music, painting, sculpting, photography, and movies. However, there is one unique piece of art at The National Gallery of Art in Washington DC that will attract viewers for representing the history of one greatest city of America.
This artwork is called New York 1911 which created by a Columbus artist, George Bellows in 1911 after he moved to New York. This artwork was done in a medium of oil and canvas with the dimension of 106.7 x 152.4 cm (42 x 60 in.) The brushwork of this artwork is visible, bold, and thick.
Bellows painted a realistic scene of chaotic and busy state of the New York City from the 20th century. His utilization of space on the canvas was thought out well that he was able to draw everything that was going on in front of him in the city. This art is very colorful painting, and the contrast of shade and light is strong that together it brings the presence of movement and rhythm in the artwork.When George started painting this artwork, New York City was at its peak and booming. Bellows used dark colors indicating that it was a cloudy day.
In contrast, he used white color to present a cold and snowy day. We can see the massive handmade structures of the buildings and Skyscrapers. Some artworks have been drawn on buildings which represent business advertisement. On the left side of the artwork, it appears that there is building on fire, or it might be coal which used for a heating system that caused pollution. Also, it is difficult to point out where the sidewalks are, and at the same time the streets seem to be chaotic as there are carriages, cargos, and people are moving together at the same time.
This art shows that everyone is busy conducting their business with wagons carrying different goods. For example, a cart is carrying a significant amount of bricks for construction purpose shows that it was in early days when New York city was undergoing construction of building and skyscraper. Even with darkness about to cover city by huge buildings, people were walking from one place to another or by use of horse or carts.
Similarly, we can see people moving quickly that the artist could not even stop to give their faces any detail, as to highlight the rapidness in which they are moving. We can also see countless of people waiting on the line to get into a trolley. At the bottom right, we can see people either trading or purchase goods from a peddler. In the middle of the crowd, a police officer is trying to take control of the street.
Overall, this is a perfect example of how life in the heart of the city was.By examining the art, we can see that the artist used different shapes including vertical lines, large and small shapes, dark and light colors and three-dimensional space. The vertical lines show the height of the buildings. Artist also used diagonal lines to bring out the disparity of visual intensity and to show the inequality in the movement of the art.
By the combination of multiple lines, the artist developed the architectural background which helped him to draw all of the buildings. He also used organic shapes to draw people and horses. A three-dimensional feel is present in the picture as if to take steps away from the artwork, it looks dynamic, and it gives the feeling as a person standing in a real downtown of New York City. The dark color used in this art has the characteristic value. He also used a dark color to show the looming shadows of skyscrapers over the street.