John Preston Fat Man and Little Boy Watercolor on paper, 16 x 20”
John Preston Mississippi Elevator Watercolor on paper, 16 x 20”, 2021
John Preston Canton Contre Jour Watercolor on paper, 16 x 20”, 2021
John Preston Approaching Lock and Dam Watercolor on paper, 16 x 20”, 2021
John Preston Sometimes Too Dry Watercolor on paper, 16 x 20”, 2021
John Preston Artist Statement: My contributions to this exhibit are Realism in the sense used by Courbet and the Barbizon school, when all painting was “realistic” in appearance. Namely, the portrayal of everyday life, as opposed to historical or religious subjects, great battles or portraits of nobility. I am generally known for what I call the “Amber Waves of Grain Thing”: expansive fields and dramatic skies. I am very much taken with those things, coming from a suburban background. It is breathtaking, but it’s not the whole picture. Hopefully these images complete my treatment of Midwestern agriculture and the climate change currently driving that meteorological drama I found arresting. I wish to be known as a Realist and a Romantic. These “grittier” images keep my previous work from being “spin”. Perhaps surprisingly, these things are as interesting to me as those original inspirations. It’s not particularly beautiful subject matter but hopefully I’ve seen it beautifully. Light redeems the ugliest subject and in the spirit of those earlier practitioners of Realism, perhaps I can make the viewer examine their idea of “beautiful”.
John Preston Drawn Up Oil on canvas, 36 x 36”, 2006
John Preston The Weather Gauge Oil on canvas, 36 x 36”, 2006
Current Exhibit
The current exhibit: “contemporary realism” with Greg Thatcher, John Preston & Bill Teeple
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John Preston Eddyville Isengard Watercolor on paper, 16 x 20”, 2022
John Preston Hidden Mississippi Watercolor on paper, 20 x 16”, 2022