Three Paintings to Celebrate Fall!

It’s officially faaaaaaalllllll! I love fall so much it makes me want to say things like “It’s fall, y’all!” and “Falling into fall!” I am giddy with the promise of orange leaves, pumpkin spice, autumny gnomes, Halloween costume preparation, and apple cider mimosas. Fall is my birthday season, ArtPrize season, and full-on, “there’s-no-turning-back-now” hockey season. It’s sweatshirts and potato soup, cozy flannels and impossibly bright trees. Fall is dreamy.

This season gives me all the warm, familiar feels, but I want to highlight some artists I was not previously familiar with. First up is Egon Schiele and his perfectly autumn-esque painting of Four Trees. If you already know Schiele and are panicking right now, let me say this: I will not post his other work! I don’t like it, for one thing. For another thing, there are some kids that read this blog for pity’s sake. And Schiele? Is not a kid-friendly artist. His portraits are disturbing (in the same way video art disturbs me. Like, I don’t think I’ll ever enjoy it.) But man, did he get it right with these trees. At first, the trees make me a little sad, but in a good way. Then! Before I get too melancholy, the sky cheers me right up.

I wish he’d only ever painted trees, truthfully.

Another painter I was not familiar with, but who made a lovely fall painting is Yokoyama Taikan. His Autumn Leaves doesn’t invoke the same fallish feel, but I love it nonetheless. Taikan was an accomplished artist and led an interesting life (teaser: his dad was an actual samurai!). Someday, let’s do a post dedicated solely to Taikan, who was fascinating enough to have his brain preserved at the University of Tokyo Medical School.

Autumn Leaves by Yokoyama Taikan. Does it remind you of Van Gogh’s Almond Blossoms? Because it did me a bit.

In keeping with the theme within the theme, this next fall painting was also done by a painter I did not know before. This is the most modern of the three paintings, completed in 1989 by Li Keran. (The title could not be more descriptive: Red Over the Mountains as if the Forests are Dyed.) I didn’t stand a chance with this painting. The forest looks like it’s on glorious, leafy fire and there’s a waterfall to boot?! I’m a sucker for a waterfall. The painting was inspired by a poem by Mao Zedong. It is not nearly as famous as the painting. Keran achieved that blazing red by mixing minerals like cinnabar into his paint. Mission accomplished- that red is overachieving!

If those houses are Airbnbs, I want to go!

Thank you for reading along as I gush about fall. Here’s to a season that is extra snuggly, full of chili cook-offs, and brimming with brisk tailgating parties!

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