Art of Aging: 72-year-old artist-in-residence

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- The Barnes Foundation has a new artist-in-residence.

Artist Eric Goldberg is a 72-year-old master print-maker and painter from West Philadelphia, and every Sunday, you can watch him work.

He is known for his detailed etchings.

But it was a painting for the 'Let's Connect' project that earned him a three-month residency at the Mural Arts Studio at the Barnes.

"I was very surprised, I never expected it. I really thought somebody thirty years old would get it," he said.

The project invited Philadelphia artists to create a new piece inspired by art in the Barnes Collection. Goldberg chose Van Gogh's 'The Postman'.

"And basically it's because I believe. Van Gogh captured the humanity of that person and it really, it's the eyes and the expression and it just touched me right here. And it inspired me to paint my postman," said Goldberg.

The warmth and wisdom of his postal carrier, Barbara Jean Griffin, shines through but his technique is what fascinates.

"Well, it's it means deceiving the eye in French and I've been doing that technique for 35 or 40 years," added Goldberg.

Goldberg was an art teacher for 33 years, so speaking to the public and explaining his process comes naturally.

Kathleen Greene, Curator of Public Programs, The Barnes Foundation said, "The goal is that they use this space as a studio to be able to have a place to come and create but also to interact with the public."

Goldberg spends 25 hours a week at the Barnes over three or four days painting and working on new etching plates.

"It's really exciting to be back among people from all over the world, doesn't happen in my studio," said Goldberg.

Executive Director, Philadelphia Mural Arts Program Jane Golden said, "What a wonderful way to provide opportunities for artists in Philadelphia. We really are like an outdoor museum."

On the weekends, you can see Goldberg demonstrate the etching press he built back in 1975.

"So the process of outreach that came with this project was really a wonderful one," added Greene.

Goldberg's residency runs through March 31.

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