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Wednesday, February 21 News

Artist's work reminiscent of Old Masters

The "Beauty of En Plein Air," featuring the oil paintings of Jon Houglum, continues through July 31 at the Geary Gallery of Darien.

In addition to his plein air landscape oils, Houglum, of Franklin, N.C., does portraiture.

"Painting landscapes is my passion," Houglum said, "but my special gift as an artist is the ability to render a portrait that captures the spirit of a person in a realistic painting style."

Houglum graduated from Moorhead State University in Minnesota with a bachelor's degree in art education. He also studied four years privately under Antonius Raemaechers, a Dutch master in Martinsville, Ind. His fine art education also included two years of portraits and figures study at the John Herron Art Institute in Indianapolis.

Houglum's composition and use of colors in his plein air oil paintings reflects the style of the Old Masters, according to the Geary Gallery. Some of his favorite subjects includes paintings of landscapes with people, wildlife and with old barns and structures. His paintings include a variety of scenes in North Carolina, including waterfalls, rivers, lakes, beaches and low country scenes.

Some of Houglum's favorite locations to paint are Florida and the western North Carolina mountains. While camping with his grandchildren on Ocracoke Island in North Carolina during spring break, Houglum took the opportunity to paint low country scenes on location.

The cow pastures, goat pastures and chicken pens seen throughout the mountains of western North Carolina are some of his favorite subjects to paint, according to the Geary Gallery.

"My goal in painting is to communicate the beauty of creation through the elements and principals of fine oil painting. Painting in the traditions of the Old Masters is a never-ending quest for me and I thoroughly enjoy the thrills and the interesting people I meet along the way," he said.

Houglum's works are included in many private and public collections. He has also been commissioned by many Civil War re-enactors and Alafia River Rendezvous members for portrait paintings.

The gallery, at 576 Boston Post Road, Darien, is open from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday to Saturday.

For information, call 203-655-6633 or visit www.gearygallery.com.