2018 JUNE artist of the month BOB WHITE

Robert White

The cathARTist

Although I had no formal training until I moved to Sun City, I grew up in a family of artists who valued and appreciated antiques, art and the arts. Like my parents, I was drawn to impressionistic and post impressionist artists. However, I always appreciated cubism and some abstract art.  In college I took one drawing course; I was mediocre at best but for my final project I replicated in pencil, a Salvador Dali painting! My parents framed and proudly displayed it. Later, in my dorm, when bored, I drew pictures of sports heros, airplanes, human anatomy and cubist art. After college any artistic endeavors lay dormant until the mid 1990s when art became cathartic for me.

The mid 1990s was a time when my professional and financial responsibilities increased. I became the director of a private school and we purchased a larger home at the NJ shore. Unfortunately, at this time my wife had serious health problems, so my life was really stressed. Somehow, I decided that I wanted to replicate impressionist works.  I purchased a rudimentary set of acrylics and watercolors and just started to paint! I would literally go to the basement to get a tool, and decide to paint a picture. A few hours later I’d come upstairs with a finished painting! However, I would not paint again for months or years until I needed to. Friends knew I was “stressed” when I painted. Many of the works hanging in this display are from that period.

The last thing I ever imagined  when I moved Sun City was that I’d become an “artist”. I came to play sports! However, after two weeks I tore my elbow flexor tendon and couldn’t play sports for months. I was sufficiently “stressed”, and decided to join the art club and take lessons from our wonderful instructors. My first class was in a new medium: pastels. I chose to replicate a complex Van Gogh painting, as I love his work; I was very pleased and surprised with the results. The more classes I took in pastels, watercolor, and acrylic mediums, etc., the more I realized that I had some talent. Joining the Art Challenge Class helped me to “think out of the box,” making me more adventurous and confident. My new artistic challenge is human and animal portraits. The All About Art club and its wonderful members and instructors has imbued me with an intrinsic love for “painting.” It’s no longer “cathARTic” art!