Donald Holden: Memory Painter

Exhibit Details


​July 16 - October 16, 2016
​Armstrong Gallery

​This exhibit, pulled from the Museum's permanent collection of contemporary American watermedia, features eighteen works by artist Donald Holden.  Holden works primarily in watercolor and exclusively paints landscapes that are intentionally small scale because he "finds a special magic in small pictures."

​Nearly all of his subjects are pulled from places he's visited - Lake Powell, the Maine coast - or his own backyard in the Hudson River valley. Although the paintings are based on actual locations, he never paints on location but instead, recreates his memory of the landscape once he has returned to the studio. He says that "Painting from memory distills what you've seen. The mind edits out everything that's not essential. You leave out all the distractions, all the minor details. You focus on the big shapes, the major elements. If you're lucky, you get to the essence of something."
Moody landscape painting of Lake Powell in reds and deep burgundies

Donald Holden, Dusk at Lake Powell IX, 1999, watercolor on paper, 16 x 20 inches. Collection of the Springfield Art Museum. © 2016 Donald Holden.

Gallery Guide

A maroon sunset reflected against water's surface with mountains in the background