Notebook

Here at the studio, I am working on a second tessera canvas. This one … pictured above … is still a work in progress, but is nearing completion.

The work is composed primarily of tessera from one painting that was chopped into pieces and reconfigured into an entirely new image, but it is nevertheless a reflection of the original work. Tessera from other paintings have been added, and like bits of memories that we call on to help us when telling a story, the new bits add depth and interest to the original. So too do the traumas, and joys and grief and love that we experience add color and texture to our memories.

While working on this piece, it was struck by how this image is like my interior vision of myself. I always seem to be stitching together a new version of myself to present to the outside world. Whatever it is I piece together might look solid and cohesive, but is in fact cobbled together with bits and pieces that have washed up on the shore of my life. I would suppose that most people find this to be true. But then again, maybe not.  Maybe it is just that I have the time to mull over all this existential dreck while cutting up old canvases.

LET THEM EAT CAKE

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LET THEM EAT CAKE
OIL ON GOLD LEAF
6 X 6
$600.00

Marie would have been so happy to be given a bed of gold leaf. In this image, she looks as in-charge as ever. Her don’t-mess-with-me aura comes through and yet she is a fascinating now as ever.

This small piece is painted on gold leaf and heavily distressed, but the cut away of the pigment reveals the gold leaf and gives it a nice energetic feel. The size means that the strong coloration does not overwhelm and is kept in balance with the gold.

Don’t forget to click on the image to get a more detailed view of Marie A. in all her glory.

MR MONOPOLY RETIRES

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MR MONOPOLY RETIRES
OIL ON GOLD LEAF
8 X 6
$800.00

This is an older piece that hangs in my studio and is still a favorite. Mr Monopoly and his monocle continue to amuse me because he is painted on gold leaf, and looks relaxed and unconcerned that the market is acting up!

Painting on gold leaf is a very different experience from painting on a gessoed surface. The slick quality of the leaf creates a surface that gives the paint more chance to move around, and act in unexpected ways.

This particular image is on a canvas board that has been gold leafed. The surface has more of a bite than other leaf surfaces that I have used. It is easier to control the pigments as they are laid down, but the shine of the gold that comes through is more subdued. I did a couple of pieces on this kind of surface, but find that I prefer the smoother surface of a gessoed board with the gold leaf as a base. That type of ultra-smooth surface is the same surface that I used to create a series that examined trees and their landscapes.

Mr Monopoly has that self satisfied look that comes with the robber baron attitude. It is rather nice that he has been reduced in size and made to look ordinary even though he is made of gold. Don’t forget to click on the image for a closer look at himself.

Seawall With Pines

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SEAWALL WITH PINES
OIL ON GOLD LEAF 12 X 16
SOLD

The paint isn’t even dry, but I couldn’t wait to show you all my latest work on gold leaf.

“Seawall with Pines” is a view out over Long Island Sound from Madison, CT.

The effect of painting trees on the gold leaf, is to keep them light and still achieve a sense of  solidity. I am doing an entire series of the lives of trees, this being the third. It is a very delicate balance of paint and visible gold leaf that determines the success of each piece.

The first in the series was in my show last December (2009) and sold right away. The second one, along with this one are shown under new work on my web site.

Don’t forget to click on the image to see more detail.

Pumpkin Patch

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PUMPKIN PATCH
OIL ON GOLD LEAF 12 X 16
SOLD

The latest news is that I was a finalist in The Artist’s Magazine Annual Art Competition.

Not too shabby, as it is a national competition with gazillions of entries!!!  It is so rewarding to have such positive reenforcement at that level.

The piece that was recognized is, “The Pumpkin Patch”.  Done last year in oil on gold leaf, it is a view of the pumpkin patch along Nod Road in Simsbury, CT.   I have always loved the tree that stands sentinel over the field, and this wide view of the tree in all the glorious array of autumn, is especially effective with the gold leaf giving it a glow through the paint.

The work is in a private collection, but keep checking the website for further gold leaf pieces under  “New Work”  or  “Oil on Metal Leaf”

p.s. If you click on the image you will get an enlarged view of the piece.