Discovery is the keynote of James Van Patten’s work. Not for him the spectacular highlights of the landscape- he seeks rather to penetrate deeper and deeper into the secret places, his preoccupation with water in the landscape being virtually unique. Whereas others may from time to time incorporate a stretch of river or a pool in an urban park into the scene painted, Van Patten concentrates entirely on the margins of water in the wild. Sometimes it may be a long-shot involving a stretch of water bounded by a little piece of land; sometimes it is an obsessively detailed close-up of the plants that grow with their roots in the water and their heads in the sky- but all have been beautifully rendered in Van Patten’s distinctive art.
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