May 25, 2010

Ronald Slayton, "Lake Champlain"

Ronald Slayton (1910-1992)
Lake Champlain, c. 1970
watercolor (with estate stamp lower right corner)
24"x28" (framed)

Value: $1,000

Slayton was originally known for his oil paintings, but it was watercolor that brought him the most personal enjoyment, and with which he worked solely later in life. There is a strong sense of movement and play in his watercolors, as well as a story and sense of humor. Watercolor demands a boldness of stroke, fearlessness in that it is unforgiving – Slayton enjoyed the immediacy of the process “…he found the perfect expression of his personality in watercolor.” This sense of immediacy, movement, and playfulness is apparent in Lake Champlain. Slayton's first large scale exhibition was a show at the Robert Hull Fleming Museum in Burlington, VT in 1939. Born in Barre, VT, he also lived in New York on separate occasions (receiving a B.S. from Columbia Teacher’s College in 1945), and later in Knoxville, Tennessee where he taught as Associate Professor of Crafts at the University of Tennessee. He returned to Vermont in the 1950’s, became Curator of the T.W. Wood Gallery from 1968 to 1986, and was awarded the Vermont Council on the Arts’ Award of Merit in 1981.