Featured Artist Susan La Mont

Artist Susan La Mont captures the quiet moments in everyday life with her wonderful oil paintings. Visit her website to see more of her artwork.

 

Unfinished Business

“Unfinished Business” Oil on Linen, 38″ x 54″

 

We’re all fascinated with stories: what’s going on around us, what are other people doing and how does their experience relate to our own? While cable television has much to answer for in the dumbing-down of the populace, the current fascination with reality shows bears me out on this point.

 

A Long Way To Go

“A Long Way To Go” Oil on Linen, 18” x 40”

 

I come from a family that has a strong story-telling tradition, with uncles and cousins who can spin a yarn at the drop of a hat. I’m not gifted with their verbal abilities, but I like a good story as well as anyone, and at some point realized that what I was doing with my paintings was unconsciously creating my own narratives, but visually, rather than orally.

 

He Searched the Room For Her Auburn Hair

“He Searched The Room For Her Auburn Hair” Oil on Linen, 40” x 50”

 

Much of my influence has come from an appreciation of the great genre painters of the past. The slice-of-life works by artists such as Vermeer hold our attention with depictions of ordinary people in the business of going about their lives, and even centuries later we recognize these quiet moments and find we can relate to them.

 

Heartland

“Heartland” Oil on Linen, 44” x 58”

 

I feel it’s important to document the stories of our time: incidents of grace and beauty, our struggle to keep up with technology, the diversity of our great culture, celebrations of life, the appreciation of the natural world and fashion and its influence. All these and more reveal our humanity and connect us not only to each other but also to generations past.

 

Capturing the Light

“Capturing the Light” Oil on Linen, 18” x 24”

 

Many of the scenes I paint involve light in a way that focuses our attention on the main element of the painting, or becomes an allegorical symbol. A bartender, for example, uses light for clarification while the man on the television behind him tries to tell him something questionable.

 

Three Women at the MFA

“Three Women at the MFA” Oil on Panel, 12” x 16”

 

The shadow on a museum wall from a woman’s gesture creates a focal point not unlike the handprints made 30,000 years ago in the caves of Lascaux.

 

The Birthday

“The Birthday” Oil on Panel, 12” x 16”

 

The warmth of candlelight on a dessert in a restaurant signifies the loving atmosphere at a family member’s birthday celebration.

 

Coffee After Work

“Coffee After Work” Oil on Linen, 16” x 20”

 

A spotlight illuminates a lone diner and emphasizes his temporary solitude (a second coffee cup on the table reveals the fact that he has a companion nearby).

 

Navigating the Stones

“Navigating the Stones” Oil on Linen, 20” x 16”

 

Stories like these sometimes become springboards for the imagination. Upon seeing “Navigating the Stones,” (an image of a young man wading in shallow water), a viewer once told me she was certain she knew the story behind it, and had renamed the painting “The Jilted Bridegroom” in her mind. Time and again I’ve had people tell me embellishments of the stories I’ve painted that are completely different from my original intention. I find it fascinating that art seems to be like a mirror when hearing these tales. We each bring our own life experiences to art, and see the work through our own lens.

 

We'll Always Be Young

“We’ll Always Be Young” Oil on Panel, 12″ x 18″

 

News programs show that there are forces that are— for their own selfish ends— trying to create divisions among us and tear us apart; I hope that my work will illustrate the common experiences that unite us.

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Artist Susan La Mont invites you to follow her on Facebook, Twitter and her blog.

 

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Comments

  1. Yes, these really remind me of the artist Hopper. My favorites are Heartland and Coffee After Work.

  2. I love all of these so much that it’s hard to pick a favorite… I think I’d have to say Coffee After Work is my favorite, only because for some reason it makes me think of Twin Peaks. I wasn’t surprised at all to find out it’s already sold 🙂

  3. These are brilliant! LOVE how the hand shadow is the focal point on “Three Women at the MFA”, very clever & I can just hear them talking. They all have that special something – bravo!

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