Photo: Philip Moose, Banares – Aug 5, undated, ink on paper in sketchbook, 12 x 18 in. Gift of Frank Sherrill, BRAHM Permanent Collection, 2006.1.15G.
April 21 – October 8, 2023 | Rankin East Gallery
Philip Moose, his name and his paintings, are nearly ubiquitous in Blowing Rock and the surrounding High Country. Best remembered for his landscapes, especially his countless scenes of Grandfather Mountain, Moose approached painting with a disciplined studio practice, producing a constant stream of pictures that found his work in the homes of so many in this community. Less known is his equally rigorous drawing practice. Philip was a prolific world traveler, finding himself throughout Europe, Central America, South Asia, and elsewhere—always with a sketchbook in tow. Where his paintings capture the splendor of mountain scenes with texture and precision, Moose’s drawing practice, like so many other artists, tended towards the prosaic recording of his surroundings.
Not every drawing was a preparatory sketch for a grand painting. Some of these images instead seem to be meditations on an especially intriguing object or place. Architectural sketches and cityscapes are common among his works on paper, and suggest a fascination with the built environment, which is particularly evident during his sojourns in cities far and wide. For this artist, his drawings appear to both inform his better known paintings while also serving as an intimate tool in documenting the world he traversed. Moose is often remembered as a quiet man, but these works on paper indicate that, while not especially loquacious, he was always looking at and considering the landscapes that informed his storied artistic career.
This exhibition supplements the forthcoming Artists Alley: Building a Creative Community in Blowing Rock and draws upon BRAHM’s permanent collection to share rarely exhibited works by one of the museum’s most exhibited artists.