Julian Burroughs Hatton III is an American landscape abstract artist from New York City whose paintings have appeared in galleries in the United States and France. The New York Times described his painting style as "vibrant, playful, semi-abstract landscapes" while New York Sun art critic John Goodrich compared him to French painter Pierre Bonnard. Hatton's abstract landscapes have been compared to paintings by Arthur Dove and Georgia O'Keeffe because of his "unbridled love of pure, hot color" similar to Gaughin and the Fauves, according to critic Ann Landi of ARTnews. Hatton's vision is of "a nature that you can literally eat with your eyes, eye candy transposed onto the entire world," according to critic Joel Silverstein. Hatton lives and works in New York City.
Hatton was born in Grand Haven, Michigan. The cold Michigan climate with two months of good weather each year, contrasted with the cold flat landscape influenced his sense of color, he recalled later. He graduated from Phillips Academy in Andover, Massachusetts in 1974 and from Harvard University in 1979 with a major in art history. Painting in the north of France helped him develop his understanding of color and landscape. His first application to the Studio School in New York was rejected since he lacked a portfolio. He studied with painter Fernando Zobel in Spain, returned with a portfolio, and was accepted. He enrolled at the New York Studio School of Drawing, Painting and Sculpture from 1980 to 1982. After school, Hatton lived the life of a struggling artist, working at the Water Club restaurant in Manhattan for eight years.
Later he worked with decorative painters, painting interiors of apartments and restaurants, while living in SoHo. In between jobs, Hatton took his portable easel and paint supplies and bicycled to Breezy Point and Prospect Park. Often he would work new painting over old, using parts of the old painting to help solve formal and symbolic problems, while responding to the landscape at hand.
Through trial and error he discovered an innate affinity for bold saturated color as well as a love of abstraction that shadowed naturalism. His work has been called "lyrical." During these years he often worked with fellow artist and wife Alison Berry. His work began to receive recognition, and his paintings started to be shown in art galleries.
Hatton exhibited at Manhattan galleries including Elizabeth Harris Gallery, Kathryn Markel Gallery, Frederieke Taylor Gallery, Frank Mario Gallery, Jon Leon Gallery, Eighth Floor Gallery, Lohin Geduld Gallery and the American Academy of Arts and Letters Invitational Exhibit. He has exhibited his artwork in Washington, Atlanta, San Francisco, Dallas, Charlotte, La Jolla (California) and Southwest Harbor and Belfast (Maine). His work was shown internationally at the Museum at Rochefort-en-Terre in Brittany, France.
ArtInfo described his paintings as "boldly integrating invented and observed shapes and colors" with his "own lexicon of shapes and lines which he arranges in innovative ways" using a "homemade visual syntax" yielding a "feast of contradictions." During these years he taught at the Rhode Island School of Design as well as Swarthmore College and the Vermont Studio Center. His paintings have appeared in the Hijirizaka Collection in Tokyo, the IBJ Schroder Bank & Trust in New York, and at Brook Partners in Dallas. His paintings are in numerous collections, from the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York to the Steve Wynn collection in Las Vegas.
Reactions by critics
New York Times critics have described his painting style as a "layered shapes in saturated colors" which were "vibrant, playful, semi-abstract landscapes" which "layers broad, richly colored shapes of trees, rivers and hills into funky, tautly frontal arcadian visions." Paintings had a "mix of Fauvism, Abstract Expressionism and outsider vision.
Art critic John Goodrich of the New York Sun felt Hatton's paintings were less "real" in terms of factual description but they "contain their own peculiar truths, evident in keenly felt colors and designs." Goodrich felt Hatton "finds expression through his forms." Hatton's paintings "remind us of the potency of a particular modernist aesthetic, and they reward prolonged looking." Goodrich elaborated:
|“||The paintings' most intriguing aspect, however, remains their combination of loose allusions and tight rhythms. As with Bonnard, a kind of muscular whimsy prevails.||”|
Critic Ann Landi of ARTnews wrote there was "something endearingly anachronistic about Julian Hatton's abstractions" which had an "unbridled love of pure, hot color," and compared Hatton to Arthur Dove, Georgia O'Keeffe, Paul Gauguin and the Fauvres.
Critic David Ebony in Art in America wrote that Hatton "experiments with complex and sometimes contradictory spatial relationships" and that his landscapes "consist of Cubist-inspired fractured planes and shifting, multiple perspectives." Critic Joel Silverstein in Reviewny.com suggested Hatton's paintings "sing to each other in a high key citron-like color" and compared him to Paul Gauguin, Joan Miro and Ludwig von Hofmann. He described Hatton as a "lyrical designer" who "abstracts form by promoting visual attractiveness."
Awards and grants
- 1992–MacDowell Residency Fellowship
- 1993–National Endowment for the Arts, Washington, D.C.
- 1995–Rochefort-en-Terre, Art Colony Fellowship, Brittany, France
- 1998–New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship in Painting
- 2001–Pollock-Krasner Grant in Painting
- 2007–Award in Art, American Academy of Arts and Letters
- Vivien Raynor. ART; Full House at Gallery in Marlborough, 'The New York Times', June 17, 1990. Retrieved on 2010-01-01. “... Julian Hatton ...”
- Johnson. Julian Hattan, 'The New York Times', 1999-04-09. Retrieved on 2010-01-01. “Vibrant, playful, semi-abstract landscapes ...”
- John Goodrich. Locating Truth Within a Grand Illusion, 'The New York Sun', April 3, 2008. Retrieved on 2010-01-01. “As with Bonnard, a kind of muscular whimsy prevails.”
- Ann Landi. Reviews: New York; Julian Hatton / Elizabeth Harris Gallery, 'ARTnews', 2006-07-01. Retrieved on 2010-01-01. “...and an unbridled love of pure, hot color ...”
- Joel Silverstein. Curious Terrain, 'Reviewny.com', 2001-04-01. Retrieved on 2010-01-01. “The paintings sing to each other ...”
- Julian Hatton. Julian Hatton website (2010-01-01). Retrieved on 2010-01-01.
- Harry Swartz-Turfle. Julian Hatton: From landscape to abstraction, 'Daily Gusto', October 1, 2008. Retrieved on 2010-01-01. “... Hatton said he'd never experienced anything like it, and clearly there was an affinity for that liveliness in a cold landscape.”
- Harry Swartz-Turfle. Julian Hatton: From landscape to abstraction, 'Daily Gusto', October 1, 2008. Retrieved on 2010-01-01. “Hatton also talked about coming to New York in 1980 ...”
- Julian Hatton. Vermont Studio Center (2008-02-11). Retrieved on 2010-01-01. “Julian Hatton (b. 1956, Grand Haven, MI) received a B.A. from Harvard and also studied at the NY Studio School. He is represented by Elizabeth Harris Gallery in NY, and has also shown at R.B. Stevenson Gallery in La Jolla, Robert Clements Gallery in Portland, and Campbell-Thiebaud Gallery in San Francisco. ... His bibliography includes The NY Times, Art Vision Magazine, and Art in America.”
- John Deiner et. al.. New York '98; A Friend In New York; Ever wish you had a pal in Manhattan who really knows the territory and will help you plan your next visit? You're welcome to share ours., 'Washington Post', April 12, 1998. Retrieved on 2010-01-01. “Julian Hatton and Alison Berry, fortysomething, are artists who live and paint in SoHo. They do decorative painting of restaurants and other places to supplement their starving-artists' existence. ...”
- Harry Swartz-Turfle. Julian Hatton: From landscape to abstraction, 'Daily Gusto', October 1, 2008. Retrieved on 2010-01-01. “He began taking his cigar box of paints on his bicycle and started to paint in the city. ...”
- Harry Swartz-Turfle. Julian Hatton: From landscape to abstraction, 'Daily Gusto', October 1, 2008. Retrieved on 2010-01-01. “His work started to get more abstract and lyrical ...”
- Julian Hatton: Recent Paintings. ArtInfo (April 15, 2006). Retrieved on 2010-01-01. “Julian Hatton returns to the Elizabeth Harris Gallery for his first solo show in almost four years ... Hattons paintings pay tribute to early American Modernists and remain a significant contribution to the idea of working from nature.”
- Section: Briefs. Muskegon Chronicle (July 21, 2007). Retrieved on 2010-01-01. “GRAND HAVEN -- Two new displays of art are on exhibit through July at the Grand Haven Area Arts Council Building, 1045 Columbus. The exhibits are by former Grand Haven resident Julian Hatton and New York City artist Alison Berry. Hatton's works on display are a collection of abstract landscape paintings. He has taught at the Rhode Island School of Design, Swarthmore College and the Vermont Studio Center. He is a 1979 graduate of Harvard College.”
- ART GUIDE, 'The New York Times', January 25, 2002. Retrieved on 2010-01-01. “CURIOUS TERRAIN, Elizabeth Harris, ... a jaunty semi-abstract picture made of layered shapes in saturated colors by Julian Hatton; ... (Johnson).”
- John Goodrich. Locating Truth Within a Grand Illusion, 'The New York Sun', April 3, 2008. Retrieved on 2010-01-01. “... contain their own peculiar truths ...”
- John Goodrich. Locating Truth Within a Grand Illusion, 'The New York Sun', April 3, 2008. Retrieved on 2010-01-01. “... Mr. Hatton finds expression through his forms...”
- John Goodrich. Locating Truth Within a Grand Illusion, 'The New York Sun', April 3, 2008. Retrieved on 2010-01-01. “Mr. Hatton's vibrantly colored organic shapes are both daintier and looser than Matisse's.”
- John Goodrich. Locating Truth Within a Grand Illusion, 'The New York Sun', April 3, 2008. Retrieved on 2010-01-01. “... a kind of muscular whimsy prevails...”
- David Ebony. Julian Hatton at Elizabeth Harris, 'Art in America', 2005-05. Retrieved on 2010-01-01. “...experiments with complex and sometimes contradictory spatial relationships ... Cubist-inspired fractured planes and shifting, multiple perspectives...”
- The Artist–Julian Hatton. ArtOnline (2010-01-01). Retrieved on 2010-01-01. “1998–New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship in Painting; 1995–Rochefort-en-Terre, Art Colony Fellowship, Brittany, France; 1993–National Endowment for the Arts, Washington, D.C.; 1992–MacDowell Residency Fellowship”
- Julian Hatton American Academy of Arts and Letters Award winner