top of page

Lee Tiller, the activist impressionist

Lee Tiller is Irish, painter and impressionist. And God knows I don't easily use that term for contemporary artists. But this Claude Monet enthusiast paints his canvases with his eyes at the end of his brushes. He is not only a talented artist, but also a fervent militant of the environmental cause, far from the pathetic jets of mashed potatoes on Claude's haystacks balanced at the Barberini museum in Potsdam.

Lee Tiller's approach is to put art, beauty and emotion at the service of the message. This is how he created a painting of great strength, which represents, by a daring mise en abyme, a little girl who paints her warning message on an interpretation of the water lilies. Discovering this atypical painter in his studio in Killarney, Kerry county.

Lee Tiller. and his artwork. The little girl and waterlilies. © Lee Tiller
Lee Tiller. and his artwork. The little girl and waterlilies. © Lee Tiller

The painting represents a little girl, from behind, painting herself on a side of Claude Monet's "Water Lilies". The message is clear: "Monsieur Monet, nature is on fire". With his debonair look of a committed teddy bear, Lee Tiller announces the color, in this case in black on his yellow t-shirt; "Drop seeds, not bombs."

This activist impressionist explains: " In ‘Monet and the Little Girl’ I wanted to represent the vulnerability and naivety of the world’s children through the motif of a single girl. In the painting she is innocently writing a simple yet earnest note to Monet, whilst at the same time she is metaphorically defacing a section of one of his cloudscapes. There is no malice, only fear.

I deliberately painted the child in a more contemporary style to suggest separation from the past modernity of Monet and that of the 21st century. Replicating his painting, I learned more about his techniques than I could ever assimilate from books, courses or museums. Monet and the Little Girl has been a heartfelt revelation."

Lee Tiller. The little girl and waterlilies. © Lee Tiller
Lee Tiller. The little girl and waterlilies. © Lee Tiller

Lee Tiller's landscapes are poems in which light marries color in a sensitive way. He interprets in some of them effects of mist which make one think of the paintings that Claude Monet made in Vétheuil, when he contemplated the Seine towards Lavacourt.

Lee Tiller. The promise of tomorrow. © Lee Tiller
Lee Tiller. The promise of tomorrow. © Lee Tiller

Lee Tiller adds: " It is my sincere contention that art, in all its manifestations, can be more engaging, memorable and thought provoking. Art has an exuberance and power that whilst silent can be chromatically vociferous and can appeal directly to the collective psyche of the public. "

Lee Tiller. A sheltered path. © Lee Tiller
Lee Tiller. A sheltered path. © Lee Tiller

As Rachel Carson wrote as early as 1962, whom Lee Tiller likes to quote: “Man is a part of nature, and his war against nature is inevitably a war against himself.

To know more about the artist: https://www.leetiller.com

In his art history lectures, Fabrice Roy combines the past with the present, in a poetic and playful evocation of the French 19th century...




Comments


bottom of page