Lately I’ve been completely immersed in two projects. One has been very public and one very private:
1) I’ve been working away painting large-scale commissions (you can check out the progress of my latest one here on Instagram). This particular Botanical abstract for a private home in Melbourne has been all consuming in it’s 2 x 2m enormity.
So in the evenings, after putting the kids to bed, I’ve been retiring to the bath to soak out my tired arms and undertake my other obsession:
2) READING. I have a stack of artist biographies and monographs a mile high that I am working my way through in preparation for the Art Retreat I am running on the French Riviera this September (2018).
My University training of 6 years was as an Art Historian. Making art came later for me. But the inspiration I glean from delving deeply into the lives of artists of the past has always been hugely inspiring and continues to light creative fires within me. Preparing this aspect of the Art Retreat is just as important to me as planning the art workshops I will be teaching there. So I have been thoroughly researching all the major artists whose museums we will visiting- Renoir (who lived in the village we are stying in), Matisse, Picasso, Chagall, Miro, just to name a few.
I’m absolutely inspired by the shared story of each of these artists in two particular areas. One is colour. Each of these were incredible, inspiring, revolutionary colourists who painted instinctually and viscerally. This aspect speaks so clearly to my own love love affair with colour. I can’t WAIT to see more of their work in person and then taking that inspiration back to our Villa Studio and paint it.
The other is that they were all revolutionaries whose work was despised and derided for years before it was understood, appreciated and eventually started selling. Each of them has stories that speak to the more sensitive parts of our own creative natures that I can’t wait to share with you. I’ve been mining each of their personal lives so that I will be able to give you a clear picture of the interior experience of each of these artists, rather than just the myths that are usually peddled about these incredibly famous artists. Stories that will inspire your own creative spirit and enable you to see that even the most successful in history all wrestled with the same internal demons that we do.
I can’t wait to bring these stories to life in the places where these artists lived and worked. To work myself as an artist in this region and become part of a creative heritage that has inspired me since I was a teenager.
Update: Our 2018 Retreat on the French Riviera was a huge success and we look forward to running another one in 2020. If you would like to hear about it when it happens, please join this list.