Artist's Biography - Tom Harsevoort
Plein air painter Tom Harsevoort blends American photo-realism with French impressionism to express peaceful solitude. With a modicum of melancholy Harsevoort uses atmospheric and Renaissance perspective and the play of light on rain soaked streets, riverbanks or landscapes vistas as means to transform rainy weather or winter scenes into uplifting poetically sensuous experiences.
Harsevoort depicts a lone figure walking a serpentine path at the centerline of "Windsor Great Park" a dramatically lit landscape featuring a thinly clouded sky, late fall trees and a cold stream. The whole scene addresses retirement from the daily fray in order to succumb to nature's gentle seduction.
In "Rue Montorgueil II" Harsevoort juxtaposes the crisp reflective paint of a glistening automobile roof through a layer of rain with the pastel soft focus of a middle ground pedestrian carrying an umbrella. Buildings in the background dissolve into the overcast sky while following the rules of Renaissance single point perspective. It is Harsevoort's incorporation of abstraction, natural forms, excellent draftsmanship and skillful painting that make his work exciting.
Harsevoort's landscapes have a strong European flavor connecting his work to that of Claude Monet, Vincent van Gogh, J.M.W. Turner and others. An admitted Francophile Harsevoort embraces a passion for Parisian ambiance and a desire to one day live in that romantic city. Meanwhile he paints North East Minneapolis scenes with amative emotion, an understanding of French exoticism and a prismatic pallette inspired by Goethe's theory of color that also influenced Turner.
Harsevoort is a Midwest native who studied art at the University of Wisconsin, the University of Minnesota and privately with Joseph Paquet of Saint Paul. Five years ago Harsevoort transitioned from a more abstract style to his current mix of impressionism and realism.
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