New York

James Winn

Sherry French

Concentrating on the farms and countryside of the Midwest, James Winn has created a group of landscapes that can only be described as glorious. Winn, who was born in the Midwest and lives outside of Chicago, imbues his paintings with a deep-seated sense of what might be called the divine in nature. As he recently explained: “I would like to in some measure share with the viewer that uplifting spiritual presence I sense residing immanent in the land.” To a quite remarkable degree Winn accomplishes this, and he does so by dint of the power of his images to inspire fresh appreciation of the beauty and grandeur of nature.

Winn has employed the panorama, a format long favored by American landscape artists, to express precisely these transcendent qualities. Working in acrylic on paper, he produces surfaces that by their very expansive character seem to stand for the enormity of nature. Young Corn and Farm Lane: No. 3 (all works 1989) reveal how a commonplace sight such as a cornfield visible from a road can disclose the structure and order underlying God’s design. Notice the attention given the individual rows of corn in Farm Lane: No. 3. Winn is meticulous in his rendering of appearances and especially clear about the distances determining the arrangement of the rows. The vital force rippling through the fields is picked up in the breathtaking expanses of radiant heaven above. In each of the compositions a luminous sky provides the focus for the feelings of peace and harmony imminent in the landscape.

Ronny Cohen