Mark Leonard


gouache and synthetic resin on panel
12 x 12 inches

19th century British artist John Constable is best known for his bucolic landscapes of rural England. And though they were not originally meant to be displayed, he also executed a series of meticulous cloud studies as a way to improve his mastery for painting skies. Fast forward to 2010, Yale Center for British Art Director Amy Meyers asks artist and art conservator Mark Leonard to make a series of paintings in dialogue with works in their collection. Leonard selected Constable’s “intensely personal” cloud studies, choosing coils, spheres, and bands as his pictorial elements. He analyzed the color palette and underlying structure of these beautiful, yet painstakingly composed, paintings, and the result is a body of work that translates Constable’s attention to shadow and light, expansive space, and compositional movement into the pared-down language of Modernism.