“Impressionism is the newspaper for the soul.” — Henri Matisse
“Work at the same time on sky, water, branches, ground, keeping everything going on an equal basis... Don't be afraid of putting on colour... Paint generously and unhesitatingly, for it is best not to lose the first impression.— Camille Pissarro
“For an impressionist to paint from nature is not to paint the subject, but to realize sensations.” — Paul Cezanne
"Ekphrasis poetry is tricky: it should never rely too heavily on the artwork to carry the concept, but it should also not wander so far away from the original inspiration that the reader cannot connect the two. Mr. Willits' new collection, Art Is Always an Impression of What an Artist Sees, manages just the right balance between the visual and the textual—his poems evoke the emotional color of the impressionist works upon which they are based, yet they never lose their sense of place as literary art. The poems nudge the reader toward an emotional understanding of impressionism with subtle imagery and the skilled use of poetic devices (the personification in "Frieze-Like Composition is lovely). Mr. Willits' ability to draw the reader into his characters' lives is particularly well done, adding an extra layer to the lush paintings which inspired the poems. For someone who loves both poetry and art, this is a collection not to be missed!"
~Christine Klocek-Lim - Winner of the 2009 Ellen La Forge Memorial Prize in poetry.
"This is a smart book combining the muse and inspiration, light and color, lust and art, sex and color. Like the paintings described the poems are impressionistic, both lyrical and factual, the poems suggest rather than state, they allude, they use figurative language to paint what isn’t spoken. He says, 'I would hold emptiness like a woman’s waist.' Read these poems with a book of Impressionist paintings to get the full impact of this rare blending."
~Helen Ruggieri, author of Butterflies under a Japanese Moon (Kitsune Books) and Glimmer Girls (Mayapple Press)
ART IS ALWAYS AN IMPRESSION OF WHAT AN ARTIST SEES
OFFICIAL PRESS RELEASE:
Author Martin Willitts Jr. merges art & poetry with a new ekphrastic publication