Sunday, April 14, 2024

Artnotes: How Broad Life is

 Tulip   Laurie Fox Pessemier   Acrylic/paper  23.5 x 17"   60 x 43cm  275.00
 

It’s hard to eclipse the ECLiPSE for news this week.  It was a non-event in Europe, where we didn’t have as much as a blink, but as my heart is often in the USA, I paid attention.

The eclipse has always been a major event in my life.  I experienced a total solar eclipse with friends, Yo and Del, in Eastern Washington state in 1979.  It was a moment of big change in my life:  I had just moved to Seattle, and my serious adult life had just started.  A couple of months later I met Blair and my life was changed forever.   Blair and I experienced our next solar eclipse together in Paris, France in 1994.  It was May, and the eclipse could be seen through the arch of the Arc de Triomphe.  To view the eclipse, I had built a box camera, the only one on the street, it seemed, and a photographer took my picture for the newspaper.  We joined another hundred-some thousand people on the Champs Elysees, and while it wasn’t a total eclipse it was enough to catapult our lives into Europe.   Our most recent (partial) eclipse viewing was in 2017, while we were vacationing at Hemlock Lodge in Winsted, Connecticut.  It marked the last summer we visited with my Dad.  I watched the progress of the eclipse through the shadow of the leaves on the tree near the porch.

Cherry Tree    Blair Pessemier  Acrylic/canvas  16 x 12"  40 x 30 cm  450.00

While I know all of these events are the result of science and mathematics, there is a certain mysticism about them, too.  Maybe it just draws our attention, and in the words of Ram Dass, make us “Be Here Now”. It preserves the experience in amber.  

 Blossoming  Laurie Fox  Pessemier   Acrylic/cardboard  20 x  27.5 "   50 x 70cm  375.00   

Right now, I am shifting my focus slightly from painting to writing.  I have been making poems that I hope to put into book form this summer.  I am finding so much inspiration in nature, from wild flowers to my dog; experiences with people and memory.  I continue to be astonished at how broad life is, and the turns it can take. 

Lilacs   Laurie Fox  Pessemier   Acrylic/paper 17 x 23.5"   43 x 60cm  275.00  

Sunday, April 07, 2024

Artnotes: Cookies Will Do

 

Mimosa   Laurie Fox Pessemier   Acrylic/paper  23.5 x 17"   60 x 43cm  275.00
 

My best friend isn’t coming to visit in April as planned.  Events beyond our control have upset the apple cart; pie will not be served.   Life is full of surprises.
 
Berlino, meanwhile, is happy we came back to Roccamalatina.  He loves his yard, and for the first time, we are here to see different wild flowers in bloom. We heard the cuckoo this morning, perhaps the earliest ever.    

Spruce Tree    Blair Pessemier  Acrylic/canvas   20 x 16"  50 X  40cm  590.00 

We had a long list of wonderful things we were planning to do with Sal – Blair and I will press on with many of them.   We will likely go to Naples – we meant to when we were at Pompeii.  We will visit the museum at Perugia, and see “Crusader” art.   And oh, yes, we’ll visit Nike Saint Phalle’s Garden in Tuscany.  If our wanderlust is still not satisfied, we will to return to San Sepulcro to see Piero della Francesco’s Jesus emerging from the tomb. 

View Balugani   Blair Pessemier   Acrylic/canvas
  12 x 16"  30 x 40 cm  450.00

I love Italy for the fact we can go lots of places, just two or so hours away. Berlino del Bosco is happy to accompany us as long as we go to a meaty restaurant on the trip.   We managed to get our favorite meat platter at La Vineria Piccina, in Castiglion Fiorentino, this week – dog approved and ever so delicious. 

Fuschia   Laurie Fox Pessemier   Acrylic/canvas  8 x 10"  20  x 25cm  275.00

We’ve been working on new recipes.  Today I made a Spaghetti alla Bottagra (fish roe), and tomorrow I have French Fish Quennelles on the menu.   I am keen to learn new culinary things – Blair has a nice cantucci (biscotti) recipe in the wings.   We may not have apple pie, but cookies will do.

Photo of Stimigliano Sunset Early This Week
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Pessemier's Sunday Salon
Weekly on Sunday  No Reservation Necessary
 

How it works: Bring a piece of your ART: that could be visual, like painting or printmaking; or literary, as in poetry or prose; or crafts, like metalwork or knitting; or food, or music.  Something you made, or feel particularly inspired by.  You have about 5 minutes to present, and we'll ooh, ahh, or answer questions you have.  You can also come and see how we work before diving in.  Just show up on Zoom at a minute or two before the hour.   
No selling, no networking until after everyone has presented.

Join Zoom Meeting
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/88093708954?pwd=M04zNHB4dFZkREp3bThweUd1YnVDZz09

Meeting ID: 880 9370 8954 Passcode: 886402

Rome 8PM; NY 2 PM; LosAngeles 11AM 

 

Monday, April 01, 2024

Artnotes: Tricked Out

 

31 March 2024  Stimigliano RI   ITALIA
Baffled Bunny   Laurie Fox Pessemier    Acrylic/canvas    9.5 x 12  24 x 30cm  250.00 

Walking up the street today I noticed someone’s name on their mailbox.   It was big letters, edge to edge “FARAONA”.  It had the sense of being cut out of a newspaper.   When you see big letters like that, placed near one another, on paper, it gives a different sense than reading it on a screen.

I enjoy type a lot and recently downloaded a font "Barbra" on my computer, which I used with the Pompeii book.

Three Peppers  Laurie Fox  Pessemier  Acrylic/newspaper 17 x 23.5"  43 x 60cm  250.00

We bought the Repubblica this weekend, with the “D” (for Donna (woman)) section.   There were in fact two extra sections, in an extra large format.   They had the best styles in there I’d seen in a long time, from gossamer prints to sequined handbags.  Some styles made me laugh out loud, others were clearly AI assisted, but a vast majority of them were just wonderful. 

I can spend an hour now, looking at the rotogravure, deciding what is AI or not.  I think that publications should be required to list if they are AI, or photoshop-ed, or in some way technologically tricked out.  It doesn’t have to be on the photo itself, just a section in the back of the publication.  Today I saw a model’s lower leg that rivalled the length of the upper leg and torso combined (and it wasn’t the angle). 

Who cares? You might say.  Maybe I don’t have enough to do.

Easter Egg   Blair Pessemier    Acrylic/canvas  12  x 12"  .30 x 30 cm  350.00

We are in Stimigliano for Easter.  I watch the little girls in their frilly frocks going to church; men wearing white shirts.  I am wearing my Easter dress, which purported to be embroidered, but in fact is a photo print of embroidery.  You could be fooled if you were drunk and the room were dimly lit. 

We met friends and their friends over coffee.  A honeybee, in a boon for the fruit trees, is flying through the corridor of our house.  He’s a beauty!  We are inundated with flowers and budding leaves:  pale green, pink and white.   I wore my new dress of those colors, and a hat when we went out to walk Berlino del Bosco this morning.   Those Repubblica models have nothing on me.

Luigi's Begonias  Laurie Fox Pessemier   Acrylic/canvas  16 x 13"  40  x 33cm  450.00

Sunday, March 24, 2024

Artnotes: Ahead

 

24 March 2024  Roccamalatina, MO   ITALIA
Beat the Drum Laurie Fox Pessemier  Acrylic/paper 24 x 17"   61 x 43cm  225.00 

Early this week, we went to Bologna.  We drove about an hour to arrive near where our painting workshop participants will be staying next week.   Berlino, panting hysterically in the back of the car, jumped out as soon as we opened the hatch.

I wonder why I don’t go to Bologna more often – it’s a terrific place.  I am glued to my chair with the Internet much of the time – what’s with that?    A rut, is what!  We get in a rut. 

In Blossom   Blair Pessemier   Acrylic/canvas   18 x 15"   468 x 3 cm   390.00

I was very impressed by this neighborhood in Bologna.  Why have we never been here before?  It was adjacent to the Garden Margherita, and we walked just a block to the entrance, passing beautiful houses along the way.

Pink Blossom  Laurie Fox Pessemier  Acrylic/paper 17 x 12"  40 x 30cm   100.00
painting with Yukie series -- we paint for an hour online weekly

At my tender age, I feel as if I have been everywhere, seen everything.  But I’d not been here.  Upon entering the garden, a lovely woman said hello, and asked were we from here?  She lived just nearby. We walked through the park, bursting with flowery trees and green grass, statuary and winding paths.  

Dogs abounded, some quite large, which was inspiring to Berlino.  We met Sky, an extremely shy Springer Spaniel.  Her owner engaged us in conversation as she cowered behind him.   He was hoping his dog will come out of her shell.  We told him how Berlino couldn’t make eye contact for the first three months we owned him, and now, well, he can be overly affectionate with certain visitors.

Pansies in Elephant Vase   Laurie Fox Pessemier acrylic/paper 9 x 12"  23 x 30cm  100.00

You have to shake it up to change.  I can look at things, events, activity the same way I always did.   Really, we could drive to Bologna once a week if we wanted to. .  We could do ANYTHING, if we just start.

“I could live here,” I told Blair as we packed up to leave the Garden Margherita.  But I think of how Berlino loves his yard.  “In a year or two.”   There’s a beautiful future ahead.

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Pessemier's Sunday Salon
Weekly on Sunday  No Reservation Necessary
 

How it works: Bring a piece of your ART: that could be visual, like painting or printmaking; or literary, as in poetry or prose; or crafts, like metalwork or knitting; or food, or music.  Something you made, or feel particularly inspired by.  You have about 5 minutes to present, and we'll ooh, ahh, or answer questions you have.  You can also come and see how we work before diving in.  Just show up on Zoom at a minute or two before the hour.   
No selling, no networking until after everyone has presented.

Join Zoom Meeting
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Meeting ID: 880 9370 8954 Passcode: 886402

Rome 7PM *usa time change accommodation; NY 2 PM; LosAngeles 11AM 

 

Sunday, March 17, 2024

Artnotes: In the Garden

 

16 March 2024  Stimigliano, RI  ITALIA
Pansies on Newsprint  Laurie Fox Pessemier  Acrylic/paper 11 x 15"   27 x 38cm  125.00 

Berlino, Berliiinooooo!  Blair and I were searching for our dog Berlino shortly after we returned from Stimigliano and let him out into the yard in Roccamalatina.   Night was starting to fall, and we try to establish his whereabouts every so often, even though our yard is not much more than an acre.

Pansies on Music  Laurie Fox Pessemier   Acrylic/paper 9.5 x 12"   24  x 30 cm   100.00

I was scanning the surrounding hillsides in the unlikely event of escape, and I noticed significant movement in our fig tree.  Yes, there was Berlino, a good 8 feet off the ground clinging with his toenails to a branch.  I startled him just enough that he fell from the tree, luckily on our side of the fence.  He was unhurt and immediately tried to do it again.  We’ve taken preventive measures (wedging a lawn chair between trunk and branch).

Silver Peppermill   Laurie Fox Pessemier  Acrylic/cardboard 10 x 10"  25 x 25cm   100.00
painting with Yukie series -- we paint for an hour online weekly

We have been discovering new and beautiful flowers since our return.  In our own yard, there are hyacinths and tulips and a riot of violets; we may have missed the cyclamen. There was significant rain, and it warms up into the 60-s daily, conducive to bursting blooms.    I plant every bulb I can, and scatter wild seed throughout the yard all year long.   Italy is truly the country of wildflowers, and come April and May, the hillsides from Torino to the toe of the boot will be carpeted.  My personal favorite are the red poppies.

Hyacinth on Black   Laurie Fox Pessemier acrylic/paper 13 x 9.5"  33 x 24cm  100.00

Italy is a significant flower producer in Europe (Netherlands being far and away the top). I bought pansies at the market on Tuesday.   Along the Italian Riviera (Genoa to the French border), greenhouses dot the hillside.  The volume of flowers for export grows yearly.   But, at least to me, Italy has the most wild growing flowers as one drives from Rome to Bologna and beyond.

Hyacinth on White  Laurie Fox Pessemier  Acrylic/paper  13 x 19"  33 x 48cm  150.00
There’s not been much wildness in our own lives, as I have had to buy a new phone and transfer data.  Linear thinking is not my strong suit; I’m not a black and white kind of girl (contrary to this week’s light and dark backgrounds for flowers).   Meanwhile, Berlino searches the garden for new adventures.
Orlando Furioso Puppet (Sicilian) Laurie Pessemier  Acrylic/cardboard  13.5 x 10"  35 x 25cm  Sold
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Pessemier's Sunday Salon
Weekly on Sunday  No Reservation Necessary
 

How it works: Bring a piece of your ART: that could be visual, like painting or printmaking; or literary, as in poetry or prose; or crafts, like metalwork or knitting; or food, or music.  Something you made, or feel particularly inspired by.  You have about 5 minutes to present, and we'll ooh, ahh, or answer questions you have.  You can also come and see how we work before diving in.  Just show up on Zoom at a minute or two before the hour.   
No selling, no networking until after everyone has presented.

Join Zoom Meeting
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/88093708954?pwd=M04zNHB4dFZkREp3bThweUd1YnVDZz09

Meeting ID: 880 9370 8954 Passcode: 886402

Rome 7PM *usa time change accommodation; NY 2 PM; LosAngeles 11AM 

Sunday, March 10, 2024

Artnotes: Inspiring Each Other

 

Lemons from Chris' Tree   Laurie Fox Pessemier   Acrylic/canvas  11 x 13"   28 x 33cm   375.00

At our Sunday Salon, an artist read aloud some of my writings from Artnotes Paris.  I was really surprised at what I had written all those years ago: about change, and feeling young.  Change keeps us on our toes, and thinking.

Wild Hyacinth  Laurie Fox Pessemier  Acrylic/canvas  17 x 23.5"   60 x 43cm  250.00 

A friend who owns a house in Stimigliano (the inspiration for buying our little apartment) is visiting here this week.  We’ve had coffee, and he bought a painting of Blair’s.  We have waxed affectionately about our time in Paris, where we met – he’s thinking about buying a pied-a-terre there because he misses the city of Light.  There’s nothing like being in a sidewalk Paris cafĂ©, we all agreed.

We will pass through Paris this summer, on our way to visit friends in Bretagne.  I am seriously thinking us setting up an easel along the quai, and selling paintings during the Olympics.  Unfortunately, the cost of staying there could sink us.  All of our usual suspects are renting their digs out for veritable fortunes.  We shall see.

Twin Boys   Laurie Fox Pessemier  Acrylic/canvas 18 x 21.5"

Meanwhile, we continue to paint:  twin babies’ portraits, painted by Blair and I, are being shipped to Paris on Monday.  They melt my heart whenever I look at them, and am so glad to see the future in their eyes.

Two Boys      Blair Pessemier   Acrylic/canvas  10.5 x 16"  
 

We will drive to Roccamalatina this weekend – our Pompeii books, in print form, are arriving by mail; as well as art supplies.  We continue to hope for our papers, which we will need to pick up in Modena.  I fret about that continuously, but as a Stimigliano friend puts it, “People complain about the bureaucracy…but we spend a tiny fraction of our time each year dealing with bureaucracy and 99% of our time just living this beautiful life in this beautiful place.”

Isn’t it something how we all inspire one another?

The Ever-Inspiring Orlando Furioso Puppet (Sicilian) Blair bought me
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INVITING All Artists to present their Work:   Paint, Literature, Crafts, Food....


Pessemier's Sunday Salon
Weekly on Sunday  No Reservation Necessary
 

How it works: Bring a piece of your ART: that could be visual, like painting or printmaking; or literary, as in poetry or prose; or crafts, like metalwork or knitting; or food, or music.  Something you made, or feel particularly inspired by.  You have about 5 minutes to present, and we'll ooh, ahh, or answer questions you have.  You can also come and see how we work before diving in.  Just show up on Zoom at a minute or two before the hour.   
No selling, no networking until after everyone has presented.

Join Zoom Meeting
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Sunday, March 03, 2024

Artnotes: No Swimming Yet

Mimosa   Laurie Fox Pessemier   Acrylic/paper  17 x 23.5"   60 x 43cm  275.00 All of our work is available as prints, also.

I’ve spent nearly two weeks now completing the Pompeii book Blair and I started in January.  He finds another picture he’d like to add, I discover all the writing is different sizes.  I can get super focused on this whole thing, like I am one with the computer.  In painting, being one with my subject or my canvas is heavenly;  being one with the computer is hell.  Even Berlino takes one look at my crazed expression, and runs for cover..

Casa di Vetti (Pompeii)  Blair Pessemier  Acrylic/canvas   24 x 20"  60 X  50cm  590.00   Link to Book

The good news is that it is officially finished, in English, at least.  I have an Italian version, but we will work at distributing this English one first.   We are looking at tour companies, gift shops, print makers who might be interested in the production.  If you have any ideas of how we might sell our project, please let us know.  Here’s the link to the flipbook, and soon I will have the actual hard copy in hand:  https://heyzine.com/flip-book/caf771d8b5.html

Primrose Red   Laurie Fox Pessemier    Acrylic/canvas
  16 x 13"  40 x 33 cm  450.00

We are free to pursue other endeavors now – I have painted a few flowers. We have a commission to paint twin boys for a Tunisien friend.  I am thinking of new projects: decorative wall painting;  painting images inside of churches, or in historic public buildings where I can paint out of the summer heat; or not painting at all and turning one of our studios into a museum of who-knows-what? 

Paperwhites   Laurie Fox Pessemier   Acrylic/canvas  18 x 10"  45  x 25cm  450.00

Spring seems to be in full swing in Italy at the moment, and sometimes it feels downright hot in Stimigliano.  It was 20 Celsius; 68 degrees Fahrenheit on our walk by the Tiber with Berlino on Wednesday.   We are on our second trip to the beach this week, but no swimming yet.

Stimigliano Rooftop
Sign up for Artnotes by contacting me at lfpessemier@gmail.com

INVITING All Artists to present their Work:   Paint, Literature, Crafts, Food....


Pessemier's Sunday Salon
Weekly on Sunday  No Reservation Necessary
 

How it works: Bring a piece of your ART: that could be visual, like painting or printmaking; or literary, as in poetry or prose; or crafts, like metalwork or knitting; or food, or music.  Something you made, or feel particularly inspired by.  You have about 5 minutes to present, and we'll ooh, ahh, or answer questions you have.  You can also come and see how we work before diving in.  Just show up on Zoom at a minute or two before the hour.   
No selling, no networking until after everyone has presented.

Join Zoom Meeting
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/88093708954?pwd=M04zNHB4dFZkREp3bThweUd1YnVDZz09

Meeting ID: 880 9370 8954 Passcode: 886402

Rome 8PM; NY 2 PM; LosAngeles 11AM