Published 7:58 pm Wednesday, February 28, 2007

I took a trip last week. Mary Jim, the paper’s advertising director, went with me, and we traversed two continents: Europe and the Americas.

Clark Hulings was our guide and we saw so much of normal, everyday life through his eyes in his new book of paintings.

He published one in 1986 and this one, published in Nov. 2006 is a completely revised edition.

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Hulings gives a brief biography in the introduction. He studied under Sigimund Ivanowski who was trained in the realistic style of the Leningrad Academy, and who “taught by inspiration and example.”

Our trip began in Valencia at the market. Hulings has tremendous powers of observation, and this painting is so characteristic of his deep attention to details. So deep that you feel as if you could step into the hustle bustle of the market.

Two old women huddle over something interesting. I wanted to sneak up behind them to see what kept them rapt.

Hulings laments that he has tried to write poetically about flower markets, but once you view his, “Place Des Ternes”, his poetry is visual and speaks much louder and more poetic than words.

Slip into the “Annecy Market” with me. Step around the pigeons, pat the patient Springer on his head and listen a moment to the conversation about yesterday’s horse race. Watch a woman choose her carrots and cabbage then step around the two elderly women discussing their latest recipe renovation and then, finally, you can enter into the antique shop. It may have taken you five minutes or an hour depending on your interest in the people in “Annecy Market”. There are a hundred more paintings just as interesting in his book.

In the picture above right, Hulings says, “This scene is near Annecy, in eastern France. The silvery green light, the shape and texture of the cabin’s overhanging roof, and the serene early morning atmosphere reminded me of Louisiana, where I spent many happy years.”

I can tell that Hulings has great love for each landscape or still life or person he paints. His art is indeed poetry in oil.

A Gallery of Paintings by Clark Hulings ISBN-13:978-0615368-1-7. $68. White Burro Publishing to buy the book or you can go to