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Am I the the only one...

...who thinks Sargent's watercolours are where the masterpieces really are?

I sit and repeatedly go through Sargent's Venice, and it's the watercolours that I end up staring at, not the oils. I think it's perhaps the personality they have. His oils are, of course, magnificent, but it's in the watercolours that he seems to really show himself. They're just... spectacular. The light! The reflections! How did you do that, John? How?!?!



  • His watercolors are magnificent and masterful and they begin with a very good drawing underneath. The better the drawing, the better the painting.
  • His watercolours are amazing. I agree with @Forgiveness - he was a consummate draughtsman. That enabled him to lay in a stroke and get it right first time. His handling of colour and value is also masterful.
    1. First of all he was a master of his craft. In other words he knew or figured out how to execute an object in the most economical way, which is in line with his oil technique.
    2. Second he had great ability to understand the value scale.
    3. Third, his own unique artistic sensibility.
    I guess most of these things are common among all the great artists (from the past and present). I feel that artistic sensibility and greater economy in terms of execution makes him stand out. I am not saying greater than other artists. Zorn, Whistler, Homer and many others were equally prolific in all the artistic media that took up.
  • This is so damned good, makes me want to pick up my watercolor palette once again, after not doing so for too many rears now.
  • Pretty much any of the master artists could probably transfer their skill between mediums.  When it comes down to it being able to see is not specific the medium itself.  So this does not surprise me that his water colors are good.
  • His work is amazing in all media! :)
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