Work of the Week — “Holyhocks at Tuckaway” by Pierre Daura

Monday, February 12, 2018

by Sadie Allen

We have made it through, my friends – Spring is just around the corner! Although Punxsutawney Phil (the beloved groundhog who predicts the weather every February) saw his shadow, I’m optimistic for the return of warm weather. With every visit to the grocery store, I’m seeing more and more fresh flowers, fruits and veggies, signaling the upcoming season. Pierre Daura’s oil painting Holyhocks at Tuckaway features some of Mother Nature’s most wonderful spring gifts. In the foreground, the green foliage is freckled with pink flowers (Hollyhocks, as the name of the painting implies). Upon further inspection, one can spot a small figure walking on the left side. To complete the soothing scene, the blue sky blends into the drifting clouds, creating a dreamy landscape.

Daura (1896-1979) spent his youth in Barcelona but was born in Minorca, Spain. While his mother died when he was only seven years old, Daura continued to pursue painting and had his first exhibition at the age of 14. He attended the School of Fine Arts and was even taught by Jose Ruiz Blasco, the father of Pablo Picasso. After turning 18, he ventured to Paris at the dawn of WWI. Tragically, he fell while painting a mural in 1923 and damaged his left hand, leaving it useless for the rest of his life. He continued to paint, though, and created this lovely scene in 1943.
This painting makes me yearn even more for the warmth of spring that’s right around the corner! While this last week was cold and rainy, soon Western North Carolina will be drenched in sunlight rather than drizzle. I hope this flowery image brightens up these last few days of February.
Artwork: Pierre Daura, Holyhocks at Tuckaway, 1943, Oil Painting, 24.25 x 24 inches. Gift of Martha R. Daura. Permanent Collection. 1998.17.05.21.