Italy has been so hot and humid this summer making it very difficult to motivate myself to do much more than lie in an air conditioned room with a good book!. But in the last few days we have had those predicted storms and now it is much more pleasant
However in August I did get away into the mountains around Cesana Torinese for a few days where I hung my exhibition at Claviere. I also was offered the opportunity to display some paintings in an art and craft shop there - at least one of which has been sold. I was delighted to receive an email from the very satisfied buyer who will also be making a studio visit. I received many compliments for the exhibition whilst I was in Claviere so fingers crossed for a few more sales.
Some photos of the exhibition at Claviere
I took the opportunity to go for walks in the snowless mountains which are just as stunning the summer - in fact they have more dramatic skies in the summer.
I then travelled into France to see the Chauvet 2 cave in Vallon Pont d’Arc in the Ardeche. For years I have wanted to see this duplicate of the original cave full of wall paintings from 40,000 years ago. The public are not allowed in the original cave for obvious conservation reasons. So the very clever French made a duplicate. It is an amazing achievement made possible through very advanced technology. I love the irony that modern technology has enabled us to enjoy these stunning works of art, made by people 40,000 years ago, whose creative ability was just as sophisticated as any 21st century artist. Unfortunately I cannot put any photos up as you are not allowed to take photos in the cave and the book I bought is covered by copyright laws. - I recommend you go there to see it all in person.
I have always been interested in ancient art - from cave paintings, to Egyptian wall paintings. Although my work is normally highly colourful I have always loved the earth colours in these ancient works and the next stop in France was to a location that I have wanted to visit since I saw a photo in book in the 1990’s - Rousillon and the ochre cliffs, where I saw all the colours used in the cave paintings and pretty much the same as the Egyptian paintings. The cliffs are amazing - I made up for the photos that I couldn’t take in the Chauvet cave - here are just a few.
Ochre used to be mined and processed in Rousillon and exported worldwide and the the former factory is now a museum - and guess what - you can buy the ochre in an incredible range of earth colours - plus a large bottle of very reasonably priced acrylic medium to dilute them.
So my next series of work is going to be heavily influenced by the form and the actual colours of these cliffs. But I also have lots of information on our lovely Alps to feed into some more mountain paintings. We drove home over a mountain pass that was new to me - the Col de Larche - after a fabulous drive through the Alps de Haute Provence, so I saw and heavily photographed a whole new area of the Alps. I haven’t produced much work in this period but watch this space - there should be plenty in the next few months.
By the way while we were in the Haute Provence we stayed in a delightful little village - Saignon at a Bed and breakfast which I can’t recommend too highly - La Maison Press de la Fontaine.
Besides the Claviere sale, thie flowerscape painting below has also found a new home from a customer who saw my work in an exhibition some time ago and recently contacted me to purchase a gift for a relative. It goes to show that it is always worth exhibiting - you never know who you are reaching.
Exhibition wise I will be exhibiting in the studio of architect Raffaela Bracco in via Roma, 64 Cocconato during the Coccowine festival and have a number of venues coming up in the Autumn, including a gallery in Turin, a castle, a restaurant and a grappa distillery.
More on that next time.
Thank you for reading and do recommend my blog to anyone you think would be interested.