Man at the Fountain

Honoré Sharrer American

Not on view

Sharrer’s paintings often ennoble working-class subjects through a studied precision evocative of the Renaissance artists she admired. This example presents a man in work clothes sitting on the edge of a fountain (based on one in Bryant Park). Apple tree branches enter the composition from both sides, framing him like a saint, while delicately rendered flowers sprout from the ground. Most unusual is the violet band running along the bottom of the composition, on which more flowers (now cut) appear with ladybugs, red onions, and a large blue butterfly, suggesting metamorphosis. Ripe with potential symbolism, this panoply of forms drawn from nature gives Man on a Fountain the appearance of a devotional image.

Man at the Fountain, Honoré Sharrer (American, West Point, New York 1920–2009 Washington, D.C.), Oil on cardboard

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