Much of Maud Gatewood’s art was based on her memories. This small print of moonlight shining on the water’s surface in a cove is likely a sleepy summer memory she had from living near a lake in North Carolina. Her work evokes similar feelings found in pre-1960s artwork that was more often about the romance of the moon and its light. This work is currently on view in Meeting the Moon through July 26, 2021. The title for the exhibition was inspired by Robert Frost’s poem, Going for Water from 1913, below. The poem and the artwork made 60 years apart speak to human’s ever-lasting interest in the moon and its ability to enchant an evening scene of moonlight filtering through trees and casting itself upon the water.
—Whitney Richardson, associate curator
Going for Water by Robert Frost
The well was dry beside the door,
And so we went with pail and can
Across the fields behind the house
To seek the brook if still it ran;
Not loth to have excuse to go,
Because the autumn eve was fair
(Though chill), because the fields were ours,
And by the brook our woods were there.
We ran as if to meet the moon
That slowly dawned behind the trees,
The barren boughs without the leaves,
Without the birds, without the breeze.
But once within the wood, we paused
Like gnomes that hid us from the moon,
Ready to run to hiding new
With laughter when she found us soon.
Each laid on other a staying hand
To listen ere we dared to look,
And in the hush we joined to make
We heard, we knew we heard the brook.
A note as from a single place,
A slender tinkling fall that made
Now drops that floated on the pool
Like pearls, and now a silver blade.