Paul Hamilton of Granville has a show full of 19 new works taking place at Ohio State University’s Faculty Club through Dec. 20.
Whether painting summer sunsets, stark winter trees, aging but stalwart barns or spring foliage, Paul Hamilton captures his adopted state of Ohio in all of its seasons.
His romantic but always accurate depictions have made him one of the state’s most beloved landscape painters.
Nineteen new works by Hamilton — mostly landscapes but several still lifes — are on view through Dec. 20 in Ohio State University’s Faculty Club. The exhibit encapsulates what Hamilton describes as humans’ “unavoidable connection with nature.”
The Florida native, who has been drawing and painting since he was 6 years old, came to Ohio in 1984 with a scholarship to the Columbus College of Art & Design, and he never left.
“Coming from Florida, I loved the change of seasons, the snow, the fall,” he said. “My paintings aren’t just about duplicating a scene. They’re more about emotion and nostalgia.”
Hamilton, 53, lives in Granville and captures the surrounding countryside. Nearly all of his paintings are at least begun outside (en plein air).
“Evening’s Last Call” is a serene scene of a golden sunset at a woodland pond. “Nature’s Impression” is about “the romance of summer,” Hamilton said. Its trees, fields and especially the central country road symbolize the continual movement of life for humans as well as nature.
Hamilton, who is represented by Hammond Harkins Galleries in the Short North, said that when he surveys the countryside, he is always “striving for the emotions that are conjured up.”
“When I’m driving, I see more than just a neat tree,” he said. “I see solitude or maybe joy or even laughter.”
At least two paintings present winter scenes that are as lovely in their own way as the lush summer landscapes.
In “December’s Gift,” a large, bare tree stands companionably in front of a stark white building. On the sunny winter day, the tree casts shadows on the building — an old town meeting house, Hamilton said. Such reflections, too, play a large role in “And So the Shadows Fall,” in which a grove of trees casts gray stripes on the snow.
Floral still lifes include “And Peace Is Here,” a glass bowl of white tulips, and “And for Harmony and Emotion,” red poppies in a clear vase set against a black background.
All this said, Hamilton’s work isn’t limited to landscapes or a particular size of canvas. Although not included in this exhibit, Hamilton is now creating portraits. And several years ago, he produced and donated a large painting to Ohio State’s Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital in honor of a friend who was treated for and beat lung cancer. “Blue Beautiful Skies,” a 32-by-9-foot mural, is comprised of 98 painted panels on metal, depicting a gorgeous blue sky over a landscape of trees and fields.
Whatever the venue, Hamilton’s works are worth a look.