"The Attic Collection" is now on display at McCartee's Barn Fine Arts Gallery in Salem, where Sue and Bill Clary will host an artists' reception on May 23.
Born in Bucks County, Penn., Van Hook spent many summers in mid-coastal Maine, where he gained an early appreciation for both art and landscape. His desire to paint led him to Paris; during the early morning hours, he was often able to enter the Louvre to copy the masters and be inspired by the classics. He and his wife would later move to California, and the paintings capturing local California scenes include one found in the attic -- an early award-winner. One of his 1979 paintings, titled "Old Town," marked the unintended broadening of his horizons. Van Hook and his peers were waiting for a figure model who failed to show up, so they decided to just go out and paint.
"It was windy," he recounted, "So I ducked into an alley. The result is an arresting painting that captures the light of coastal California and where a truck is the focal point.
McCartee's Barn Fine Art and Antiques: 23 East Broadway, Salem, N.Y. The Attic Collection: George Van Hook; artist reception May 23 6-8 p.m.. Visit McCartee's Barn on Facebook.