Picasso and William H.Johnson Keep Viewers on Edges of Their Seats

The Philadelphia Museum of Art ends its Picasso Show on April 25, 2010. Be sure to see it before it ends. William H. Johnson was influenced by Picasso and found his own style. Elementary school students, then, seeing reproductions of his work, enjoy doing their own variations on Johnson’s themes, which I’ll post at a later date.

Johnson’s “Going to Church” is so colorful and surreal. Look at those blue horns, hooves, fence, churches to carry the eye around the whole picture. Brilliant! And look at the stretch of blue sky attached to the tall pine trees. Don’t you love it! Of course what really clinches the whole painting are the two guys sitting on the back of the wagon, feet dangling, hundreds of feet above the farm fields.

Next is Johnson’s “Cafe.” That gal is holding onto her man, who wants to get away. His eyes and his feet are screaming to get up and be gone!  The kids in an Art Aware class  ask, “why are her legs white.”  “Why do you think?” “White stockings?” “Sounds good to me!” “Look at those crazy chair legs and that change-purse about to fall off the table.”

Ahhhh, Picasso and Johnson do well!

Do you like William H. Johnson’s artwork as much as I do?

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