Sunday, July 14, 2019

Artnotes: Painting by the Sea

The Yellow Rock (view from our house)  Blair Pessemier  Acrylic/canvas  12 x 12"  30 x 30 cm  195.00​

Phew!  What a week it’s been!  We drove a whopping 16 hours from Roccamalatina, Itay to Concorneau, France, stopping for the night just steps from the geographical center of France.   Harika has been a trooper, to indulge her family’s penchant for seeing friends (and the sea).

We have not been to France for more than two years – I am amazed how well I can understand the language!  Not so much for speaking, but luckily, our friends, a French/German couple, speak English.  In fact, we played Scrabble, in English.  I love to play games.

​The Garden (after a visit to the museum)  Laurie Fox Pessemier  Acrylic/canvas  12 x 12"  30 x 30cm  195.00

As we wound our way to an unknown destination, we passed through Italian tunnels, by stone mountainsides, with cascading water;  flat fields of grapes and grain; hawks.   At about 10 hours, the ride was too long, and we were delighted with our clean, brilliantly painted hotel room, with restaurant on premises.  We ate Andouillette, and beef carpaccio (Harika thrilled with our choices),  in wooden cabanas on the grass; wine accompanied, followed by ile flottante. 

​View from Chez Jacky (memory) ​Blair Pessemier Acrylic/canvas  20 x 48"  50 x 120cm  400.00  (rolled canvas)  

But this fare was nothing to compare with our delights from the sea in Bretagne.  We ate at one of the ten best restaurants of my life:  Chez Jacky, an oyster and seafood bar/restaurant/store jutting out over an inlet to the Atlantic.  Here, seafood was harvested in its own beds and served to the customers, with bread and wine.  Simple, fresh and ever so delicious:  giant pools of oysters and crabs and big blue lobsters.   We liked it so much we ate there twice.

​The Spider Crabs at Chez Jacky  Laurie Fox Pessemier  Acrylic/canvas 32 x 22"    81 x ​56cm   375.00 (rolled canvas)
Of course, we didn’t overlook the crepes of Brittany:  our host was a native of the area, and knew just where to find the best crepes (mine with onion and seaweed).   With our hostess (am I allowed to say that?) we visited a show of “the last of the impressionists” and the local collection in Concarneau – all wonderful.  The next day we went to Pont Aven, home of Gaugin, and where many of his works still remain.  We bought a painting (not a Gaugin) and a dish (that might have come out of one of his paintings) to demonstrate our continued lack of self-control.  Then Chez Jacky.
​Birdie Rock  Blair Pessemier  Acrylic/canvas   12 x 14"  30 x 36cm  275.00​

We barbecued sardines, and tuna (fabulous – 5 euros a pound); and I made a sea bass with lemon pasta.  We covered numerous topics from the US to France and beyond; we are all in a transitional period of our lives. They are thinking of leaving Paris, too.

We saw fireworks over the ocean, the night before the Fete Nationale, and in the car once again to drive 5 hours to Paris.   And yes, we found a little time to paint.

​Boulders by the Sea   Laurie Fox Pessemier  Acrylic/canvas  12 x 12" ​ 30 x 30cm  195.00

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