Saturday, December 12, 2009

Let the journey happen

I'm putting together my exhibition for the hospital. Its fun going through past art looking for pieces that will compliment each other. Its almost like a treasure hunt. Ever notice how some pieces seem better than you remembered? I guess we stop looking at only "that spot" we struggled with. I had to compose a write-up; never my favorite thing but they are getting easier. I'm less apt to cram too much information in as in the past. I'm preferring to focus on a theme or idea and develop it. After completing that, the exhibition pieces seemed to select themselves.

My France paintings are going. That's a definite.

I had the opportunity to visit France last year. We detoured there on our return from exhibiting in Russia to visit a very special artist, Martine-Alison ( I'd been communicating with her for several years and she is to this day quite a dear friend. I painted a series of the medieval village of Perouges. It was a very special day when Martine-Alison walked the streets with us. I'll never forget the feeling. The sun was bright and warm and it lit up the old stone as I had only seen in pictures. We walked and giggled and practically danced our way around every turn taking an enormous amount of pictures! Ivy hung like garland from buildings and roses grew out of the cobble stone ground. Flower pots were tucked in everywhere. I was in an artist's dream.

The sights were grand! Giant window shutters hinged at the bottom dropped down to form shelves where people sold their goods. They were instant counters. Mike bought a sugar cookie that was baked in pizza shape and sold in wedges. The smell from this tiny little bakery filled the air. Mike claims it was the best cookie he ever ate. Somehow I think the whole ambiance around that cookie combined to make it the best, but he claims not. (French cooking... it was probably the butter!) Suddenly Martine-Alison slipped us into an unmarked door. It was dark and a narrow winding staircase attached to the stone wall led us down into a cellar. Not an ordinary cellar. A wine cellar! The lights were amber making the dark wood glow in such richness. At the long bar was a friendly gentleman who offered us tiny glasses of wine to taste. Along the walls were cases and cases of wine invitingly displayed like tiny little still life's. Of course we purchased a bottle for later...

My memories and delight for this place are still very vivid. What other art would match this series? It is so unlike my seascapes from Maine and Cape Cod. I chose to match the softness and the feeling. I've added meandering garden pieces and a special one I painted this fall in a magical garden in Ireland. I'm pleased with the international flare this exhibition took on. Take an idea or a feeling as your starting point and let it lead you somewhere, on a journey. A famous singer song writer said that about writing songs. Its the same with art and today with selecting a group for an exhibition. Don't try to plan it all out in the beginning. Start with a feeling and let the journey happen. The result will be far richer and the little surprises that occur along the way will make you smile.

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