I began attending Florida Atlantic University in the summer of 2015; in this summer I discovered many things, one of them being the Boca Raton Museum of Art. One day I was feeling very alone and very small so I began to drive around. I had been to Mizner Park many times before so I began there. Walking towards the museum I began to have a feeling of immense interest wash over me, starting at the top of my head and following down to my feet. A man at the front desk gave me a map and told me where to go. As I walked up the stairs I began to remember the art museum in my hometown and all of the times I had gone with my family. Wandering through the museum admiring all of the wondrous artwork, I would stop and absorb the magnificence that each piece held.

It was not until my most recent visit to the art museum that I stopped and noticed this painting hung in a marvelous frame. It was dark, glum, cloudy and wonderful. Completely wonderful. There are many trees that look like shadows standing tall in a cluster on the left, most with no leaves and some scattered here and there as your eyes move down what seems to be a path. The sky is mostly grey, cluttered with clouds and a hint of blue peeking through some of those clouds. In the background it looks like the land touches the sky with a muddied grey/blue kiss. The path is light and begins to fade as it moves back. I was drawn to this painting because it spoke to my feelings of loneliness and sadness. I have been feeling lost, lost in the world and all of the troubles that life brings. I could see myself standing at the beginning of this painting alone, with hope to see brighter days. It took me aback at first look as I immediately felt my stomach turn to knots and my throat start to swell with that same sad feeling. I started to cry seeming as alone as one person could possibly be while not alone at all. People passed by barely stopping to look at the incredible art in front of their unamused faces whose eyes gave away that their minds were elsewhere. As I stood there consumed with emotion my mind stay fixed on the pain of my unlucky life while my eyes stare never breaking from the painting in front of me. Growing up you imagine becoming an independent adult as something that will be some amazing metamorphic experience that is all fun and games until it gets down to the real stuff. It is metamorphic, amazing though, that I have yet to experience. Yes, I am growing up learning new things, learning the new me. Yet all at once my life has begun to crumble in front of me, day after day a new something has torn me down again and again. But, in all of the darkness and sadness there remains that little glimmer of what awaits behind the clouds of darkness—that bit of blue to let you know that it will get better. This subtle touch made me hopeful for what is to come and not so worried that life is all bad with no chance of bouncing back from the hardships life throws my way.

Maurice de Vlaminck calls this painting Paysage en Bretagne circa 1930. Maurice was a french painter who is known for his part in the Fauve movement. This movement was of a group of artists who had come together using vibrant colors to paint instead of duller, simple colors. This almost completely contradicts the painting that I was so entangled in emotion by. The painting I fell to is dark using lights and shadows to give the viewer the emotional feel of the painting. Who knows he could have just been painting a landscape (Paysage en Bretagne translates to “landscape in Brittany”), but for me it is much deeper than just a landscape with a path, for me it resonates into the deepest crevasses of my heart. In finding this piece of artwork I have found some of my strength to hold on for better days. Although I may feel isolated and alone now, I am strong, I will make it, and it will get better sooner or later. And when it does I will think back to this painting and remember how it made me feel and how it made me realize my inner longing to be truly happy once again.


About The Author

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Sophia Lanza is a student at Florida Atlantic University. Sophia is passionate about the arts and enjoys connecting emotion evoked by the art she experiences to writing. She began writing about art as a pass time when she was young which soon evolved into a serious interest of hers.