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Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Marine Artist Bob Holland Captures the Essence of our Maritime History

The Bounty, Greenport, New York.  Limited edition Giclee reproduction From original watercolor . Image size 20"x 27"
     I met Bob Holland for the first time in 2009 at his studio in  d’ART CENTER in Norfolk, Virginia. We were about to open an exhibit titled "Celebrating our Maritime Heritage" as part of the 20th Annual Great Chesapeake Bay Schooner Race and our first annual "Schooner Days" events held in conjunction with the Schooner Race here in Olde Towne Portsmouth. As a Hampton Roads native, I've grown accustom to seeing the art work of this well known artist and I really wanted to have Bob Holland's marine artwork in our gallery and as part of this exhibit.

"The Eagle" USCG United States Coast Guard New London, Connecticut. Limited edition Giclee reproduction from original watercolor. Image size 20"x27"
     Bobby Burnell, another exceptional marine artist that we represent had just delivered to us a few  new paintings to be shown in the upcoming exhibit. Fortunately Bobby Burnell and Bob Holland were old acquaintances and  he suggested that I give him a call, so I did and the rest is as they say- history! Of course the icing on the top is that Skipjack is the only gallery that represents both of these tremendous Hampton Roads artists under one roof. I'm not trying to brag about it- I just believe that such a momentous pairing of artists is certainly worth mentioning and  I'm just delighted out of my socks to be able to display such legendary marine artist's works here in our waterfront Olde Towne gallery.

"The Battle of the Ironclads" by Bob Holland. Oil on canvas. The Ironclad battle in Hampton Roads, Virginia, March 9, 1862 as described on the brass name plate located at the bottom center of the frame. Measures 30 X 54 inches framed.
"The Pride of Baltimore I & II - A Tribute." Limited edition Giclee reproduction from original watercolor. Image size 20"x 27"
     Bob Holland is as passionate about the story behind his paintings as he is in the creation of it. "Pride of Baltimore I & II- A Tribute" as Bob shared with me in a recent conversation, was painted from the perspective of standing on the deck of Baltimore I with the Pride of Baltimore II sailing in tranquil seas in sight from the stern of the ship. The Pride of Baltimore was an authentic reproduction of a 19th century Baltimore clipper topsail schooner commissioned by citizens of Baltimore, Maryland. It was lost at sea with four of its twelve crew on May 14, 1986. The Pride of Baltimore II, a replica vessel of more modern design commissioned to replace the Pride in 1988, now sails as a Goodwill Ambassador from Baltimore and the State of Maryland.

"The Eagle and the Rose- A Salute in Hampton Roads" Giclee reproduction from watercolor original. Image size 20" x 27"
"The Eagle and the Rose- A Salute to Hampton Roads" was painted in the late 90's as these two tall ships arrived for Norfolk's annual Harborfest. 

     "I was out in my Grady-White watching the early arrival of some of the vessels when the tall ship Rose, a replica of an 18th century Royal Navy frigate that cruised the American coast during the Revolutionary War  passed the anchored  U.S.C.G. cutter barque Eagle and fired  a traditional cannon salute as she sailed by," said Holland.

     You can clearly see where Bob goes to find inspiration for a painting. These are incontestable moments that artists seek to find- the passage, the way, the emotional connection found in a subject that stimulates the artist to pick up a brush and create their next work of art. I personally love to hear the artists stories, the poetry of ideas that inspires one to create. Bob Holland is a master of stories as you can clearly see in his paintings. 

Bob Holland is an established American Artist with home and studios in the Hampton Roads area of Virginia. His involvement with the arts for many years and his career includes many accomplishments, awards and exhibits in design and fine arts. His paintings are in private and corporate collections around the world.
An Art Center School of Design graduate with a career of Industrial Design, Graphic design, Illustration and Fine Art provides him with an extensive knowledge and awareness of composition and the essential elements that comprise a successful presentation.

     Please come and visit us at Skipjack Nautical Wares & Marine Gallery and preview Bob Holland's marine art. You will be inspired too! You can also preview his work by visiting his artist page on our website. Click here to open the link.
      Thank you for allowing us to share this with you. Please add your comments below (we love favorable comments) or write Bob Holland yourself at 

     Click here to go to the latest blog on Skipjack's Nautical Living.

1 comment:

  1. I've been admiring Bob's creations for twenty years and also love his colonial Williamsburg works. To sit (quietly) and watch him bring life to a blank canvas is an experience in itself. The results of his skill, talent and attention to detail are all top shelf.


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