Monday, September 02, 2019

Artnotes: A New Bag of Clay

Zinnias    Laurie Fox Pessemier   Acrylic/paper   25 x 17"  63 x 41cm  150.00

I owed someone near Stimigliano 20 euros, since June, and I told them I would be back in August.  So, despite stifling temperatures on August 27, we headed down that way.  The heat was worse than one could have expected.  Harika didn’t eat for the 36 hours we were there; we sat during the day in our apartment with the shades drawn; sleeping was really out of the question, and everyone else sat up all night in the town square, which was kind of fun.   I am really not a hot weather person.
It’s considerably cooler up here in Roccamalatina.  Still, it’s  90 this afternoon.  Just having my feet on the cold stone floor seems delicious.  Harika sleeps in the grass.  Mosquitoes are bad, but I have spray, and coils and plug-in deterrents.  Should I be bitten (already 100s of times), I have a special deactivating cream.  I think mosquitoes will one day rule the world. 
I took up my brushes again this week.  I really only like to paint on newspaper, so that’s what I am doing: 5 chickens and my zinnias.  I am planning my planting strategy for next year:  a field of flowers, including many sunflowers, zinnias, cosmos, four-o’clocks, sweat peas.  I can always buy vegetables but I can’t find flowers.  They are so good to paint.

Blair has done another super duper portrait this week.  He’s been our breadwinner of late.  I love this picture, of a young man playing tennis.  It wings its way to America next week.  Bravissimo!
We decided to recharge our batteries with a trip to Faenza.  We have 5 free days of an airconditioned rental car.  There is an artist’s house/museum there I wanted to see:  I’d like to make my house a museum, and am looking for pointers.  Despite the internet site claiming it was open, it was closed.   Can we believe anything?

So we went to the International Ceramic Museum there.  It was a 70s type building, rather stifling inside but chock full of terrific pieces of pottery (from all over the world).   The traditional Majolica (that Italian Renaissance decorated pottery) was fabulous, of course, but the more contemporary work, from Italy and beyond, was fabulous.   Paper thin ceramic, big giant blocks of terra cotta, modern minotaurs.  highly refined finishes were all great inspiration.

I can’t wait to get up to Sandra of Zocca to buy a big bag of clay.

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