Congratulations on receiving an Art History Honorable Mention/ Fall 2022 and best wishes ongoing to:
Eloise Schappert is a Sophomore at Western Washington University majoring in Art History and Environmental Studies.
“Art history has the unique power to captivate me completely, and inspire me to learn as much as I can about all art. In the future, my goal is to work at an art museum or gallery. My dream museum would be the Musée d’Orsay in Paris, which I have had the immense pleasure of visiting, because my favorite era of art is the impressionist. The soft contours and vivid colours of the impressionists is very pleasing to my eye and the fascinating theory behind impressionist art, primarily that of it being a new way of seeing the world and then representing it through art, make impressionism simply charming. Of course, this dream of working at the Musée d’Orsay may just be pure fantasy, but I do plan to study abroad in France for closer access to the many wonderful art museums Europe has to offer.
I plan to graduate with a degree in art history, and one in environmental science as I am passionate about both my interests and cannot leave either subject behind, although I must admit I find art history more compelling. “
Honorable Mention Scholarship Essay /Eloise Schappert
Compare and contrast the 2 paintings shown below:
Eileen Monaghan Whitaker’s “Manhattan Detail” and Frederic Whitaker’s “Harlem Sunshine” are both wonderful watercolours of New York City. The works similarities do not extend much past that fact, however. They are both watercolours, but both paintings are unique in their composition and style. They also retain much of each artists personality through the form.
Each artist used watercolour in a different way to achieve a very different effect. “Manhattan Detail” is done with fuzzy contours and a sort of blurring effect of the details. The buildings in the background and the tree to the right are examples of the way Eileen Monaghan Whitaker has done this piece. The buildings and tree are signified by their colours and shades. The details are made by varying colours and shapes rather than hard outlines. “Harlem Sunshine”, on the other hand, contains harder lines and contours. There are more visible details outlined with dark lines, rather than simple colour changes. The image here is crisper, slightly more realistic. Frederic Whitaker’s painting also contains more texture, especially on the buildings. His painting is, to a certain extent, drier than Eileen Monaghan Whitaker’s. The crisp effect in “Harlem Sunshine” is also partly due to the more extreme contrast between the light and dark portions of the work. The shed in the foreground and the clotheslines are much brighter than the middle ground buildings which are the darkest things in the painting. The lightness of the background buildings makes the middle ground buildings appear even darker. “Manhattan Detail” has a steady progression of light with the lightest in the foreground and darkest in the receding background. The colours in each painting are also very different. Eileen Monaghan Whitaker’s palette is composed of very natural colours. The yellow, red, and brown tones are nicely contrasted with the natural greens and blues. Much of the painting is actually a very pleasant range of warm grays which feel typical of a warm day in the city. All of the colours are on the warm side, which gives the light an effect of a warm afternoon. Frederic Whitaker’s piece is contrastingly cool. The grays of the image are rather blue-toned, making the painting much cooler. The use of vibrant greens, purples, and pinks leads to an atmosphere a little less than natural. The unusual colours certainly make the work eye-catching and they add an engaging semi-fantastical element. The combination of the colours and the contrast in shades that was mentioned before make the light feel as though it were a crisp winter or spring morning.
The central subject of the paintings also differs slightly. “Manhattan Detail” places the central focus on the people of the foreground by creating a line perpendicular to the majority of the parallel lines found in the buildings. There is a slight diagonal with the objects closer to the foreground; the lamp in the upper right corner being traced down in a slight curve to the metro station entrance. “Harlem Sunshine” also has the focus in the foreground, but the subject is the clotheslines. There is also a diagonal, starting in the upper left corner and following the dark buildings, drawing the eye directly to the clotheslines above the green shed. Both paintings contain tall buildings so there are long lines running from top to bottom of each.
“Manhattan Detail” and “Harlem Sunshine” are structurally different paintings, but they are both wonderful snapshots into different parts of New York City. The ambiance of the city is reflected, with Eileen Monaghan Whitaker’s showing a glimpse into the busy life of the street and Frederic Whitaker’s demonstrating the busy life of the people in the city.