Sunday, January 17, 2021

Artnotes: After I Rest my Arms

Naoussa    Blair Pessemier  acrylic/canvas 12 x 16" 30 x 40cm   475.00
Although I paint ALL THE TIME, there is nothing more difficult for me than to reproduce another painting.  It doesn’t matter if I liked the painting or not, or if it’s the same size or different, it’s extremely hard for me to do. 
I recall a friend in Paris who sold a portrait of an old woman TWICE.  She just redid the painting, from looking at the old one, and they were practically indistinguishable.  With me, it’s not completely certain they are of the same image.
Delos (Cleopatra\s house)  Blair Pessemier  acrylic/canvas  13 x 16"  32 .5x 40cm  550.00
I almost always paint from life, taking in the scene, and putting out my impression on canvas.  This is a unique and rather mysterious process, hidden even from myself.  I can only rarely paint from a photo, and it has to be one I took.  I used to be able to take a mental snapshot, store it in my mind, and paint from that, but for the past 10 or so years, the physical photo helps.   When I paint from life, sometimes I smell what I am painting, or feel a great attachment to the object or scene.  It can be exhausting, because I am so involved in the process.  All this makes me really look forward to painting outside again. 
Cypress in our Garden (no, not from Greece)  Laurie Fox  Pessemier  acrylic/canvas 20  x 8"   50 x 20 cm   550.00
Right now we are stuck in Roccamalatina because Emilia Romagna is an “orange” zone for the virus, (narrowly avoiding “red”).  Because we live in such a small community (Guiglia population 3,999), we can drive up to 30 kilometers.  I’ve been trying to see if there’s a way to get to Tuscany through the back roads, but winter isn’t the best time for that.  Then we're on the highway to Stimigliano.  It make me think of Varian Fry sneaking painters from Southern France through the Pyrenees to Spain, and safety during World War II.  Then I realize what a weak sister I am for not just bucking up and staying put, just because I want to paint in a warmer clime.
Pines (Scotch Broom) in Snow Laurie Fox Pessemier  acrylic/canvas 18 x 18"  40 x 40cm  550.00
We went for a walk yesterday, in our community, in an area we’d not walked in before.  The fact is we never walked anywhere because I was so unfit.  In preparation for walking on the Silk Road, we started an exercise program in September.  In any case, we walked around Montecorone and toward the Sasso di S Andrea.  These “sassi” are enormous rocks like the ones you might see in the background of Leonard’s Virgin of the Rocks.  There are drawings in the Louvre which have them, too. 
Greek Flag (can you tell we're headed toward a Greek show for Blair?)  
   Blair Pessemier  acrylic/canvas  8 x 12"  20 x 30cm  425.00

Blair is better at this commission thing than I am.  He has CONTROL.  He has been heavily involved in this painting project, which has made my arms ache (it’s a much larger picture than my usual).  The jury is out whether it will pass muster, but we hope to know this weekend.
View of the Sea    Laurie Fox  Pessemier  acrylic/canvas 25.5  x .32"  65 x 83cm  SOLD
Meanwhile, I took a mental snapshot of a frozen scotch broom plant – the sky has been pink and orange in the early mornings…maybe after I rest my arms.

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