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London trip and new painting underway

December 2, 2012

Well, the last 5 posts have been a lot of talking about art, today, I’m finally getting a chance to DO some!

But first an update on my recent trip to the UK. Sorry no photos, I’ll bring my camera next time.

I took the train under the English Channel from the Netherlands to St Pancras, London via Brussels. I travelled by train up to Newcastle where I was an invited speaker at a round-table discussion on art in dementia care. We were about 13 artists from different disciplines, a wonderful inspiring group. I’ll be speaking more about that in another post.

Then I trained over to Liverpool for another meeting. That was useful for orientation in participatory arts in Britain, but there wasn’t much concrete for me in the way of support for this in Holland. Still, I had fun at the Liverpool Tate where there was a great installation by Doug Aitken.

Though I visited art galleries and museums in both Newcastle and Liverpool, the creative high point for me personally was the National Gallery in London,- specifically two rooms containing Impressionists and post -Impressionists.  I’d been reading Rilke’s, ‘Letters on Cezanne’ and was yearning to see one of Cezanne’s still-lifes up close. They didn’t have those on display but some of his mountain landscapes were there, along with other icons of art history like Seurat’s ‘The bathers’, one of van Gogh’s Sunflowers, Degas’ dancers.

I think as far as paint application and strength of the image go, I love Sargeant the best.  Still, it was just amazing to stand in front of these canvasses and feel the artist’s presence in every brush stroke.

I came back inspired and nourished, from all the art, and spending time with my mother’s sister, the concert pianist. And from the cities, and all the meetings with other artists and travellers. This was a big contrast with our northern Dutch village life, which occasionally feels claustrophobic.

I started on a large painting yesterday. Wanting more texture and freedom, I applied a thick layer of acrylic as under painting, partly with brush partly with palette knife.

Acrylic under painting with charcoal sketch

Acrylic under painting with charcoal sketch on top       50 x 70cm

And here is one step further with some glazing. Loving how the colours glow through.

Thin oil paint glazes added

Thin oil paint glazes added

I suppose some people would stop here, but I have a vision for this painting of a fairly loosely painted rendering of transparent bottles in their beautiful pale aquas, lime greens and olive greens. There is also some deep plummy tints which will ground the composition. It feels great to be painting again.

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3 Responses to “London trip and new painting underway”

  1. Patricia G Says:

    Thank you for sharing you process. I’ll keep watching for more.

    • szoutewelle Says:

      well, thank you Patricia. I just popped over to your blog and really enjoyed it. Loved the fishes on ceramics. Did some calligraphy cut into black slip on beige clay ages ago, it was some of my favorite work.


  2. I look forward to seeing the end result! What an awesome process! You go, Sara!


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