Parkman St, Brookline, MA by Thomas Barron

  • Title: Parkman St, Brookline, MA
  • Artist: Thomas Barron
  • Medium: Charcoal and watercolor
  • Size: 18"h x 24"w
  • Creation date: 1986
  • Added to collection: 2020
  • Donor: Gift of Mark Andres
  • Campus: Rock Creek
  • Location: B3/2 Drawing gallery rm 228

Thomas Barron's "Parkman Street, Brookline, MA" is a lively charcoal drawing with thin watercolor additions characteristic of the plein-air work this artist produced from the early 1970's to the mid 1980's when he was part of the Boston-based Direct Vision Group of painters founded by Jason Berger (1924-2010).  Heavily influenced by a Modern compression of pictorial space, this work has a strong lyrical rhythm reminiscent of Chaim Soutine.  The street leaps up like a roller coaster, but is held down by the two thick tree trunks which frame it, creating an animated dance of motion and stability.  The abstract qualities of shape, color and movement are, in the artist's words, the "real subject" of the painting.  After the mid 1980's Barron's work became increasingly abstract and even more strongly gestural. He writes, "I am interested in setting down what excites me in the many visual dramas I see being played out within nature. These 'dramatic' dialogs have their own worlds of line, space, color, and form and are the real subjects of the work."