Margaret Huddy's large scale watercolors...
John Mendelsohn

...reveal an abiding fascination with the monumental, both literally and figuratively. Meticulously rendered, these sites of religious and political power glow with unabashed grandeur. The palaces, temples, and courthouses that Huddy depicts are either centuries old or revive historical architectural styles. In her images, the past is preserved and venerated, while bathed in a distinctly modern, hard edged light.

Huddy finds her inspiration in a variety of cross-cultural settings, including religious subjects ranging from Chartres Cathedral to Hindu and Buddhist temples of Indonesia. She has painted free standing landmarks, such as the Queen Victoria Memorial in London, and government buildings including the Supreme Court in Washington, DC.

Whatever the architectural style, a sense of order and clarity prevail, and are mirrored in Huddy's formal strategies. In her images we often see a fragment of a building which will represent the entire structure. This sculptural detail, facade or cartouche is seen from below. It may be set against the sky, but in any case it is raked by strong sunlight, producing distinct shadows and a vivid coloristic display.

The sunlight both defines and dazzles. In contrast to the impressionists, Huddy allows form to stay intact, while multiplying the sculptural detail we are able to absorb. This insistence on a kind of dizzying visuality alerts us to how these images mimic and recycle photographic representation. These views, with their upward gaze, recreate the perspective of the camera's eve, while it searches for a talisman that in the future will recall and entire experience.

The essence of Huddy's vision is a re enchantment of civic and religious architecture, giving back to them a similar sense of awe. These monuments remain for her places of high drama, flooded with a sharply focused emotion. Their gods, saints, and allegorical figures regain a measure of mythic splendor in the artist's spirited images. 


© 2010 Margaret Huddy, AWS, NWS. The digital images of artwork on this website are the property of Margaret Huddy.
Any duplication or use of the images without her express permission constitutes copyright infringement.