Sunday, November 22, 2009


Artwork is a part of life here. A fifth gallery opened today in this small village of Auvillar. I've been soaking it all up like a sponge. My most intense sponging has been in Paris, 2 trips, one in September and one last week. On the first trip we found ourselves in the Louvre, the Musée d'Orsay (my favourite of all) and l'Orangerie. Here I am in action in front of one of Monet's "Les Nymphéas".

One of the museums that we visited this past week was Musée Marmottan Monet Paris. As well as seeing many awe inspiring pieces by Monet, including some of his quite abstract paintings, we were treated to a special exhibit of French Fauvism and German Expressionists. Many of you know that I've been working towards a more emotional, expressive and colourful style of painting and this exhibit was the best school that I could have attended. I can't describe how exciting this exhibit was except to say that I left there feeling like I was on a chocolate high!

Here are a couple of my favourites: Blue-Black Fox by Franz Marc and Young Girl With Peonies by Alexej von Jawlensky.

Trees and Water

Just when I'm about to give up......voila!

It was early November and I'd been wandering around southwest France for months, completely entranced by its colourful landscape, ancient houses, ruins and quaint villages. I'd done several lovely sketches and plein air paintings but nothing had completely grabbed me as the perfect subject for a series of larger studio pieces. The paintings that I'd completed of local scenes were good but I couldn't believe that they were mine. I was frustrated, I had thought that I'd return home with almost enough pieces for an exhibit.

A few weeks ago, while wandering in our usual style, John and I came across a tree lined creek just east of here that curved and meandered through the countryside. The breeze rustled the leaves off of the trees and they were spiraling down into the water. I was mesmerized by the patterns, colours and movement and buzzing with excitement and inspiration. I've been back to this spot a few times, I've done several studies and they look like Cheryl paintings. Tomorrow am the series of larger pieces begins.