Artnotes Italy Daily

Sunday, March 11, 2018

Drip drip drip

all acrylic on newspaper 17 x 24"    43 x 61cm

“Water is life,” a cabbie in Paris once told us.  Since then, I try to see the beauty of rain, and snow, and assorted precipitation.  In Rocca Malatina this weekend, the snow, still nearly a foot deep, is melting and giving life to Springtime.    Rivers are running down the sides of the streets; plastic pipes, spilling gushers, make me think of miracle springs; gutters and downspouts spew.   The drip drip drip continues night and day, and the snowbanks have diminished from 6 to 3 feet.  Snow recedes and grass grows around the trunks of the trees, many with broken, dangling branches.   
Harika loves this yard and runs around where the grass should be, digging to earth.   We’re just here for the weekend.  We sold five paintings in February, three of which I forgot were up North.  We picked them up and shipped them off to Sarasota, Florida.  I wouldn’t mind hitching onto that ride.  But it’s great to be back in Rocca Malatina, with a steady diet of hugs and pizza with friends. 
We drove into Rome this week to attend a presentation at Blair’s old architectural school.  It is right next to the Coliseum, and it has that casual, “hey, there’s the coliseum” quality when one glances to the side.  A toga wouldn’t be out of order.   The speaker was outstanding, and the other attendees were of the exceptional level one finds surrounding universities.  How often do you get to speak to someone who is mapping the Vatican, or was accepted to the Medieval Studies graduate program at  Yale, Harvard, Princeton, but chose Blair’s school, Notre Dame?  It was a lively group that took part in the question and answer segment of the evening.  I won the door prize:  a book of the complete collection of Piranesi’s drawings and etchings.
We looked at a possible mural project before that:  a Paris scene in a French products store in downtown Rome, right up our alley.  The thought of painting indoors had great appeal, after our outdoor workshop last Sunday, in the cold and damp.  We visited with an old friend from Paris while we were painting.   
I get confused about where we are when we move around so much.  Roman voices are quite different from those in Emilia-Romagna.  It is funny that I think of coming back to Rocca Malatina as “home”.   There was a time I felt that way about Paris and Seattle; both of those places are very distant past now.  I rarely felt at home in Connecticut, although my own voice comes from there.  
I am painting party dresses this week.  It must have something to do with the Oscars and such, and what one wears on the red carpet.  Black.   Or maybe I need a night on the town.  For now, I am wearing my fur coat in the house.

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