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George Copeland Ault: A Realist Painter of Light and Darkness

George Copeland Ault was an American painter known for his precise and eerie night paintings of urban and rural landscapes. He was influenced by Cubism, Surrealism, and American Folk Art, but he had his own unique style that some people call Precisionism. Ault was born in Cleveland, Ohio, but he spent most of his youth in London, England. He studied art at the Slade School of Art and St John's Wood School of Art. He came back to the US in 1911 and settled in New York and New Jersey. He had a hard life, though. He struggled with alcoholism, depression, and poverty.

He moved to Woodstock, New York in 1937 with his second wife, Louise Jonas. There he painted some of his finest works, like January, Full Moon; Black Night; August Night; and Bright Light at Russell's Corners. These paintings show his amazing ability to capture the light and mood of the night scenes. He used simple lines and vivid colors to create a sense of order and calm in contrast to the chaos and despair of his life. He also painted some local buildings like barns and houses that symbolized the old-fashioned way of life in the countryside.

Some of his earlier works were more urban and modern. He painted New York skyscrapers and streets in a geometric and abstract way. He was not a fan of the industrialized city, though. He once said that skyscrapers were "the tombstones of capitalism" and that the city was "the Inferno without the fire". He preferred to paint the quiet and lonely aspects of the city, like empty alleys and dark windows.

Ault was influenced by many artists, but he also had his own original vision. He admired Cubist painters like Picasso and Braque for their use of shapes and angles. He also liked Surrealist painters like Magritte and Dali for their dreamlike imagery and symbolism. He was inspired by American Folk Art for its simplicity and honesty. He was friends with other American painters like Edward Hopper and Andrew Wyeth, who also painted realistic scenes with a touch of mystery.

Ault was not very famous when he died, but his paintings have gained more attention and appreciation over time. His works are now displayed in many museums like the Smithsonian American Art Museum and the Georgia Museum of Art. He is considered one of the most original American painters of the 20th century.

I hope you enjoyed this blog post about George Copeland Ault's painting style, famous works, and early influences.

Check out the link to see some of his work: George Copeland Ault | Ballyhoo Art Posters

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