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Artist Bio for George Van Hook -

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George Van Hook

George Van Hook was raised in Pennsylvania, lived and worked as an artist in the Bay Area of California, then returned to the east coast to settle in New York, northeast of Albany. He attended Oberlin College and earned his B.A. in Art at Humboldt State University. Van Hook was featured in a cover article for American Artist Magazine in March of 1989 and again in December 2001.

As a young artist, George Van Hook was interested in the early 20th century California Impressionists, as well as with artists such as Thomas Eakins, John Singer Sargent, and Andrew Wyeth. An artist for nearly his entire life, George Van Hook follows in the traditions of J. Alden Weir and William Merritt Chase with his integration of form, light, and color, to create rich, textured landscapes. As a plein air painter, Van Hook always paints in nature, yet he intentionally chooses his locations based on the structures of the site. His paintings are thus deliberately balanced in forms and light, carefully plotted without altering the sovereignty of nature. Van Hook’s landscapes focus on the process of seeing, as one’s sight captures what a camera can miss—visions, sensations, and experiences. Depicting familiar northeast locations, Van Hook translates the impressionist style to a contemporary subject, as he builds lights on darks with confident strokes.

George Van Hook captures the very essence of the beautifully variant Green Mountain landscape. From fly fishermen on the Battenkill River to seasonal farmscapes, he is able to bring the richness of this New England area to its height. When not working out-of-doors, George Van Hook paints still lifes in the impressionistic tradition. Always exploring form, color, and culture in these pieces, he bringing elements from all of his experiences to the canvas. Van Hook produces wonderful figurative works; a girl reading in the garden or a woman preparing to dress - accomplished scenes that speak to the innocence and elegance of the most delicate subject an artist faces. From these figurative works, Van Hook has been commissioned for portraiture by affluent families as well as accepting commission for mural sized hunting and sporting paintings.

George Van Hook has received the following honors: Best of Show, Southern Oregon Art Show, Grants Pass, OR, 1983 Outstanding Young Man of America Award, 1983 Best of Show, Redwood Art Association, Eureka, CA, 1981 John Van Duzer Creative Arts Scholarship, Humboldt State University, 1977 First Place, Ferndale Art Festival, 1976 First Purchase Award, Redwood Art Association, 1976

Notable Exhibits
American Museum of Fly Fishing, Manchester, VT "The Art of Casting: Contemporary Fly fishing painting and sculpture, May, 1999
Atelier des Peintures de L'Abbaye, Poissy, France
The Discovery Museum, Bridgeport, CT "Art in the Garden", June, 1999
Foyer Gallery, Humboldt State University, Arcata, CA
Gallery Enatsu, Hiroshima, Japan Exhibition, July, 1999

“The experience of seeing is the most important part of the process….My aim is to translate that experience onto the canvas. My eyes are so much better at that than the lens of the camera….” “I feel a kinship and continuity with the entire flow of Western painting since the Renaissance….Having a sense of the larger flow and importance of Western art makes it easier to remain unaffected by the vagaries of quickly passing art fads…"

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