Fog Horns (1929)
A very Happy Birthday to great American modernist and early abstract painter Arthur Dove! Here's a funny couplet a disgruntled critic once wrote about him:
To show the pigeons would not do / And so he simply paints the coo.
Dove was interested in synesthesia, "a neurologically-based condition in which stimulation of one sensory or cognitive pathway leads to automatic, involuntary experiences in a second sensory or cognitive pathway." In layman's terms, synesthesia is when you see sounds, hear color, smell images, or blend your senses in any other way. In the piece above (one of my favorite paintings of all time), Dove explores the sound of booming fog horns visually with deep maroon concentric circles.
Dove spent his early career in New York with art world superstars Alfred Stieglitz and Georgia O'Keeffe. With their support in the early 1900s, he produced what some believe to be the first abstract paintings to come out of America. Dove passed away in 1946, just four months after Stieglitz, due to complications from a heart attack, stroke and kidney failure.