Lost Art Salon is a San Francisco-based gallery that specializes in the rediscovery of historically significant artists and fine art collections reflecting the major styles and movements of the Modern Era. Open to the public, the gallerys showroom offers over 5,000 paintings, drawings, prints, photographs and objects from the late 19th Century through the present, with a strong emphasis on 20th Century Modernism.
"Back to The Land - Le Retour à La Terre: Paintings and Photographs” Mendocino, California
Gaetan Caron, Artist and Lost Art Salon Co-Owner
Gaetan's Home in Mendocino, Northern California
In early spring 1999, my life companion, with whom I was freshly in love, invited me to visit an old orchard he had just acquired in Mendocino County, Northern California. Being from Québec, I was struck by the warmth of the sun in early spring, the intensity of the light, the blossoms of the Santa Rosa plum and Manzanita trees, the sound of the running creeks and the seclusion of this mountain ridge and its serene valley where this heirloom orchard was nestled. This place has since become home, where my family and I now live full-time in harmony with its nature at the center of my inspiration, creativity and spirituality – I call it “The Land”.
At the Turn-of-the-Century, my great grandfather had immigrated back to Québec (retour à la terre) to homestead a remote plot of land after working in the textile industry of Massachusetts to survive the Great Depression of 1873-96. That is where both my grandfather and my father grew up. Number nine of a French Canadian family of 10, I grew up in rural Québec on a plot of land where my father had also chosen to live. I then spent most of my early adulthood experiencing urban Montréal, the other distinctive culture of Québec. My mom having passed on to me her passion for arts and crafts (especially weaving), it led me to specialize in ceramic arts at l’École de Céramique Bonsecours. Life eventually brought me to San Francisco where I co-founded Lost Art Salon with my dear friend Rob while helping my husband restore our organic heritage fruit orchard established by Portuguese settlers at the Turn-of-the-Century. This life-long project, the remoteness of the site and our respect for the environment called for the construction of a fully off the grid sustainable hay/bale home which allowed my generation to also go “back to The Land”. (Covered in: "Off the Grid Homes, case studies for sustainable living" by Lori Ryker; Sunset Magazine October 2006; and Anthology Magazine Summer 2011).
The "school" of collecting fine art through Lost Art Salon mixed with the discovery of Northern California inspired me to continue working on my personal creative expression. Photography and oil painting proved to be my preferred ways to express my connection to the land and document the beauty of inland Mendocino. The lengthy process of one medium over the immediacy of the other strike the right balance for me. Oil paint applied to a canvas reminds me of the meditative nature of hand molding clay, my first passion within the art world, and photography allows me to capture those unique moments when seasons are traveling through their cycles setting the light in harmony with the time of the day. I use the camera to reinvigorate painting and my photography is in return enriched by the dialogue with painting. The graphic power of photography with its techniques of cropping, foreshortening and near abstraction also get incorporated into my painting.
This past year was a continued exploration into the world of abstract photography derived from nature using a micro lens that enables me to get really close to my chosen motifs. The colors vary from bright and rich to neutral monochromatic tones and shades found in bark, lichen, fruit, flowers, water, grasses, rocks and shadows.
I have also been studying three European Masters who like myself had found in a specific location the source of their inspiration: Paul Gauguin (Pont-Aven Brittany/Tahiti), Vincent Van Gogh (Arles – South of France) and Paul Cézanne (his native Aix-en-Provence). One can notice their strong influences in my new works, similar to the effect their posthumous European retrospectives had on so many artists during the first half of the 20th Century. One of them whom I studied with high interest was Maurice de Vlaminck, mostly known as a Fauve and for being the studio partner of André Derain. Vlaminck ended up creating his own style of landscapes along the Seine.
In addition to previous general studies of the Group of Seven (The Algonquin School from Canada), the Hudson River School, landscape artists of Maine, the Barbizon school of French painters, the Impressionists (more specifically Claude Monet and Camille Pissarro) and the English landscape artists (Turner and Constable), I also dived deeper last year in the specifics of four landscape Masters, favorites of mine: George Inness (the father of American landscape painting); Théodore Rousseau (Barbizon, France); Jean-Francois Millet (Barbizon, France); Stanford Gifford (2nd generation Hudson River School).
Fine Art Photography
Gaetan photographying the Mendocino Coast, by Georges Khayat
All following photographs (archival prints on Hahnemuhle Fine Art Pearl) are available in a limited edition of seven with two artist prints (A/P) Samples showcase standard framing methods using one of the five contemporary frames below and archival white 8-ply matting behind UV protected conservation clear glass.
All photographs are available in five formats except when indicated otherwise Custom framing available upon request - please contact us with any inquiries
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Approximately 16"x20" Framed
Unframed Print 08"x12"
Approximately 21"x27" Framed
Unframed Print 12"x18"
Approximately 23"x30" Framed
Unframed Print 14"x21"
Approximately 25"x33" Framed
Unframed Print 16"x24"
Approximately 30"x40" Framed
Unframed Print 20"x30"
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