‘Starry Night’ comes to life at Art Council

Published 9:30 am Wednesday, November 8, 2017

By JOYANNA LOVE/Senior Staff Writer

Creativity is shining at the Chilton County Arts Council with the completion of a window display inspired by Vincent Van Gogh’s “Starry Night.”

The project began when Arts Council President Sue Anne Hoyt and member Maria Hosmer were discussing a new display.

Hosmer wanted to use a famous painting as an inspiration. They settled on “Starry Night” and used the painting as the blueprint for a 3D village scene.

The artists said the painting lends itself to 3D because there are three elements to the painting — sky, mountains and the village.

Hosmer said she had wanted to do something different than the typical harvest or Halloween displays.

Each artist painted a copy of Van Gogh’s painting, and Hosmer created the village buildings.

The project took longer than either of them had anticipated.

“We put in some very long days,” Hoyt said, commenting that each of them put in 100 hours before completion.

However, she said it was fun.

The original “Starry Night” was painted in 1889, one year before Van Gogh committed suicide.

Hosmer said Van Gogh was not as crazy has he has been depicted. Hoyt said it is now believed that Van Gogh had epilepsy.

“He wanted to be a preacher, but he was kicked out of seminary for being overzealous,” Hoyt said.

Van Gogh had sold all of his possessions and gave the proceeds to the poor.

“I feel he shared his beliefs in his paintings,” Hoyt said.

She said “Starry Night” is an example of this because of the emphasis on light and nature.

“Yellow was his favorite color,” Hoyt said.

Van Gogh’s style is considered Post-Impressionist. Hoyt said Impressionism focused on light but often used dots of paint to emphasize it. Van Gogh emphasizes light, but he does it with different brush strokes than an Impressionist artist would have.

Recreating the painting helped each of the art history lovers learn more about Van Gogh’s style. Hosmer said the brush strokes are more varied than they look at first glance.

Van Gogh’s style “laid the foundation for modern art,” according to Hoyt. Instead of using the traditional linear perspective and shadow to show depth, Hoyt said he used color to show depth.

The hope is that the display will create an increased interest in the Arts Council.

The completed art project can be viewed at 703 Second Avenue North in downtown Clanton.