Right out Under the Sky

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William Merritt Chase, The Big Bayberry Bush, c. 1895. Oil on canvas, 25 1/2 x 33 1/8 in. Parrish Art Museum, Southampton, New York, Littlejohn Collection

A true plein-air artist, William Merritt Chase painted right out “under the sky,” working directly on the canvas to capture his immediate impressions of the area surrounding his home in Shinnecock Hills, where he taught annually from 1891 to 1902. Completed about midway through his Shinnecock years, The Big Bayberry Bush is a singular example of how Chase distilled “the harmony which I see in nature.” With an eye for color and spatial arrangement, Chase positions his three eldest daughters in bright white frocks with colored accessories playing near a bayberry bush in a flat, open terrain of brush and sand dunes near their summer home. Their varying poses and placements in the scene create a dynamic, triangular movement that leads the viewer’s eye in a zig-zag line from the foreground to the distant Stanford White-designed shingle-style home on the distant horizon before resting on the serene blue sky above. The warm burnt umber tones against the cool grays and pale azure sky suggest the passing of summer into early autumn. A critic later praised the work for “its admirable atmospheric effect, and for the deft description of summer sunshine.”

Elsa Smithgall, Exhibition Curator

A Peek Into Karel Appel: A Gesture of Color

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Karel Appel, Flower Still Life, 2004. Photo: Liza Strelka

Manager of Exhibitions Liza Strelka snapped these photos during the installation of Karel Appel: A Gesture of Color, opening this Saturday.

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Karel Appel, Flower Still Life (detail), 2004. Photo: Liza Strelka

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Karel Appel, Roman Infantryman, 2000. Found objects and oil on wood, 78 x 41 x 59 in. Gift of the Karel Appel Foundation, 2016. Photo: Liza Strelka

Views From Phillips after 5

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A visitor interacts with artist Dan Steinhilber’s Interface artworks. Photo: Instagram/heidinotklum

Last week’s All That Jazz Phillips after 5 was action-packed! Here are some of our favorite visitor photos from the activities all over the museum, including craft cocktails, tours, jazz from The Pete Muldoon Sextet, and a one-night-only interactive exhibition by DC-based artist Dan Steinhilber.

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Visitors interact with Dan Steinhilber’s Interface artworks. (Left) Photo: Instagram/etxeco (right) Photo: Instagram/conniepaik

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A beautiful evening to enjoy the Phillips’s courtyard. (Left) Photo: Instagram/rebleber (right) Photo: Instagram/ksnahyun

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Instagrammer @nataliemueller3 on Dan Steinhilber’s participatory work at Phillips after 5: “A fun, interactive take on the disconnect from the talking heads of DC and the digital world and the moving body”

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(Left) @cocktailsandcraft shares the view from The Jazzy Mule: scotch, elderflower liqueur, bitters, ginger beer, lime (right) Instagrammer @dnl340 captures The Pete Muldoon Sextet in action

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The view from inside Dan Steinhilber’s interactive artworks. (Left) Photo: Instagram/hprlhoda (right) Photo: Instagram/christine60605