Tuesday, August 30, 2011

The Famous West Baden Springs Hotel

In my last blog, I gave you a "teaser" about the soon-to-happen paint-out at the 1902 West Baden Springs Hotel in West Baden, IN near French Lick and Brown County. http://www.frenchlick.com/aboutUs/history/wbsh This is how one of the web sites describes it:

An Historic Indiana Luxury Hotel
Enter the splendid atrium of West Baden Springs Hotel and feel transported back to its halcyon days. Once dubbed the “Eighth Wonder of the World” for its seemingly implausible six-story, free-span dome this landmark Indiana luxury hotel has been meticulously restored to its original 1902 grandeur. Timelessly elegant, this well-appointed Indiana luxury resort is a true American classic.
Timeless Elegance within this Landmark Indiana Luxury Resort

Embark upon an unforgettable Indiana luxury holiday within the grand West Baden Springs Hotel, offering two extraordinary spas, 45 holes of legendary golf and an elegant, Beaux Arts gaming establishment. 
Well, my husband and I had a fabulous time there.   The huge grounds and gardens have been beautifully restored including the four Spring Houses where visitors at the turn of the century would drink the natural mineral water for their health.  All of this spectacular architecture and gardens offered the artists a bounty of subject matter to paint.

My husband, Howie, and I spent a night in the spectacular hotel with its huge dome on the fifth floor overlooking the atrium.  Before sinking into the elegant sheets, we listened to some wonderful jazz (piano, base, drums) in the hotel along with a delicious meal.

Howie never goes anywhere without at least one guitar so you may notice a guitar and banjo behind him in the corner of the room.  He's content to play for hours while I paint, and the other artists love the background music too.   

As you can see, we all had a blast of a time, and Howie even got his portrait painted by Chris Newlund.  I painted that view of the hotel in the first photo of this blog and finished a good painting.  However, I can only show you the painting in progress because I intend to submit the finished painting to the book Painting Indiana III: Historic Architecture.  We aren't allowed to publish any paintings to be submitted so here's my painting in progress:

The canvas panel is 9" x 12" and is certainly more than half complete but just not finished.  However, this should show you the view and the impact of the painting.  On the final day of the Paint-Out, there was a very successful Painting Sale on the veranda with wine and cheese for collectors and the public to see the freshly painted works along with framed paintings we brought from home.  A big "thank you" to the sponsors of this event:  Indiana Heritage Arts org. and The Brown County Art Gallery. http://www.browncountyartgallery.org/indiana/heritagearts.html

From Sketchbook to Canvas:  Four Artists Show the Process
On September 16, an exhibition opens with my paintings along with three other oil painters at The Tippecanoe Arts Federation in Lafayette, IN.   Because this is a noncommercial gallery, we've decided to let it have an educational bent by explaining the painting process with sketches, field studies, and progressive photos of the finished work while it was being painted. My next blog will show you some of those things----so stay tuned.

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