The Artist’s Statement
” I have always been challenged by the shadows in a composition – in making them hold as much information as the clear sunlit shapes and forms that often take most of our attention. Forest Floor is one of those works where I am looking closely at the natural world and, by presenting it on a large canvas, I force myself and any passerby to give it full consideration.
For many of my fellow artist, the Adirondacks are a series of mountain vistas with rock slides and forest species changes, off in the distance, offering recognizable detail around which to build a painting. For me, living amidst dense -foot tall white pines, the visual focus us measured from inches to yards away, in lichen on bark, needles on a path or the downward swoop if a spruce branch farther ahead. This is my world on evening walks into the NYS Forest Preserve out my back door, where light is filtered and shadows cut across the snow in winter or the forest floor in summer. And my black Labrador and I find more than enough to explore here, she with her nose and me with my eyes and imagination.”
Stephen Horne, McColloms, NY
After a forty-year career as an editorial cartoonist, illustrator and museum exhibit designer, Stephen Horne has returned to paints and canvas, with an eye to landscapes here at home, and far away on distant coastlines. Working in acrylic and oil, Horne has spent the last few years exploring these worlds, marveling at the forest floors on trails near his home in Paul Smiths, NY, to be then stunned, on vacation, by the roiling seascapes of Nova Scotia and beach dunes and sunsets of Florida.
“The dense Forest Preserve out my back door forces me to see a landscape of detail, within a few feet, full of the rich greens and browns of the Northern Boreal forest. So, when I travel to the coast—Cape Breton, Ocracoke, NC or Sanibel Island, FL in particular— I am amazed by a world of practically endless horizons, barren of trees, blasted by wind or lit by an entirely different sunlight. I ricochet between the two worlds in my paintings, and am happy for it.”