Weight of Water Color at the Woodmere Museum - 6abc Loves the Arts

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The Weight of Watercolor is on display at the Woodmere Art Museum until March 13th. (WPVI)

The Woodmere Art Museum has a new exhibition that is the first solo showing of one of Philadelphia's most respected realist painters.

Eileen Goodman is still a practicing painter in Philadelphia. She started her career as an illustrator and graphic artist. But Woodmere director William Valerio says it is her watercolors that she is best known for, "Eileen is a spectacular watercolor artist."

The exhibition is called The Weight of Watercolor: The Art of Eileen Goodman.

"We feel that she does something substantial and unique with watercolor that nobody else does," says Valerio who describes the exhibition as a journey through Goodman's career. It showcases about 50 works dating from the late 1950s to 2014, "We want to give you a sense of how her career evolved but we also want to show you what she's famous for."

And she's famous for her truly monumental watercolors.

"I mean these are really big works of art," says Valerio, "they're 5 feet across and so you know when she paints pears or when she paints roses, they're enormous."

Valerio says one of Goodman's most famous works is Valentine's Day Sweets, "A lot of people love that picture," he says, "there are big cupcakes with red icing, and you know you really want to just bite into those red cupcakes because she makes them so sensual."

The exhibition also features Goodman's sketches. "We thought it was a great opportunity to be able to show the finished work with the preparatory drawings," says Valerio who adds that the finished works really draw viewers in, "I've seen people in this gallery for an hour," he says, "so I think it engages people... with the beauty of the work and it engages people I think with the stories that she's able to tell."

The Weight of Watercolor is on display at the Woodmere Art Museum until March 13th.

For ticketing information, visit www.TheArtsinPhilly.org.

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