Man Bartlett

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all paintings: oil on wood panel, Sandy relief price: $450
dimensions: top 2 rows: 5 x 10”, bottom row: 6 x 12”


About the Beach Paintings

My family spent every summer on Fire Island until I was about 14 and I grew up with stories of the hurricane of 1938 and how in its aftermath there were houses floating in the Great South Bay. Even though the destruction that Sandy wreaked on the island has been fierce and devastating, there is an acceptance of the effects of storms on barrier islands and a commitment to rebuild.

Over the years I returned to Fire Island because it has always been for me a place of escape, solitude and reflection. This sand bar has a scrappy wildness to it that no amount of civilization can erase. These paintings were made during the summers of 2001-2004.  The house I stayed in is most certainly badly damaged if not destroyed and perhaps even the spot where I sat painting has been reclaimed by the sea.

But I know that the beauty and majesty of the ocean remains unchanged as does the rare quality of the light.  And it is this inevitability and timelessness that these paintings were always about: the feeling of being at the edge of the earth and the experience of the line where ocean meets sky, watching the horizon fade into fog or emerge crisp and clean in the sun’s bright light. These paintings bear witness to what has transpired for thousands of years: the ebb and flow of tides, occurring at times with great violence but some times with barely a whisper.

I am offering these paintings at half their retail value to benefit the victims of devastation brought by Sandy to New York.  The “Sandy relief price” is $450.

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Man Bartlett