Ski Holm



Corn Stalks in Autumn, 2000, Oil on Canvas, 84"x 72"


Corn Stalks in Summer, 2000, Oil on Canvas, 84"x 72"


For a few years now many people have asked me, “Why corn?” Try being a landscape painter in rural Pennsylvania and ignore it. For many years I was admiring corn from afar, using it as a prop for more “important” works. It wasn’t until my wife and I started growing it in our back yard that I began to really see it. At first my interest was purely practical, checking for germination, making sure that it had plenty of water, wondering why it had only grown to three feet by mid summer. Then I felt pretty foolish upon hearing the phrase “knee high by the fourth of July” After that I felt way too good about myself when I realized that three feet was closer to my waist than my knee. When the stalks reached about six feet or so I noticed something wonderful. As I would run the hose on them it didn’t seem to matter where I sprayed the water, it would always end up at the base of the stalk, right at the roots. Each leaf would act as a rain gutter, channeling everything where it was needed. This was a special plant, one worthy of more careful study.

The series of paintings began in 1997 with Corn Stalks, (this was later renamed Corn Stalks in Summer, Study) a relatively small landscape, 32"x 26". I soon realized that this had to be done on a much larger scale, more life size. I lived with the idea for a couple of years. Then in 1999 I started taking photographs of the local fields, drawings were done from these photographs and then canvases were scaled up from the drawings. The two Corn Stalk paintings are seven feet tall and six feet wide.


The manifestations of man’s influence over nature have always fascinated me. In all of my landscapes the human foot print is quite noticeable, but not until this series did it become so evident and absurd. Farmers have inadvertently turned the roadways into giant rat’s mazes and the corners of these living walls seem to rush at you like the prow of a great ship.


But, as I discovered, nowhere is man’s Influence over nature so prevalent than in the Super Market.

Written for the exhibit at Nexus Gallery in the Spring of 2000


Washington County Museum of Fine Arts, 2005
Pianta, 2003
Nexus Gallery, 2000
Penn State, Mont Alto Campus, 2000
Lost Dog, 2000



 Corn at a Corner, 2000, Oil on Canvas, 36"x 96"


Corn at a Junction, 2000, Oil on Canvas, 40"x 46"


 More Corn  

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Corn Stalks in Summer, Study


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