At Salon Schmitz for the hanging of the annual exhibition. Many hands make light work, but there were so many at it, Walter Dahn and his teams of helpers, that I simply stood at the side and drew them all working.
Lots of people are gonna have their volcano stories, travel travails and ruined trip stories, stranded because of ash in the stratosphere stories…, mine is I went to Rome to do some sketching, Stephanie sent me there, as a birthday present, so as I could get stuck into some uninterrupted work and before leaving for the airport, she said to me from England, “Don’t worry if you haven’t done as much as you want to, you’ll be going back.” She didn’t mean the same day!
Considered getting a train but was so expensive thought I would wait to get the next available flight. Didn’t know Rome (and Madrid) was where everyone flying to Europe was going to be landing. When I realised the situation wasn’t going to improve very quickly I went back to the station. By then it was jammed solid and had to queue for seven hours to get to the ticket desk by which time the only way to get north out of Italy was by a much more circuitious route that by where of the fare had pretty much doubled.
Well, once I’d adjusted to things I got back to drawing but, apart from missing the teaching I was scheduled for, there’s an exhibition I’m taking part in, opening tonight in Cologne, and so here I am. Journey was fun, went to the morning market in Rome ‘n’ stocked-up with provisions, shared it out at lunch-time, in international company, as the train wended its way through Switzerland – a panoramic picnic – out of the window, alpine lakes, snow-capped peaks, flower-filled fields and apple trees in blossom… don’t get that on the aeroplane.
So that was all because of the old roman god, Vulcan, and his not wanting the northern Europeans to have Ariel carry them anywhere – or maybe it was Iceland’s revenge on those same governments who’ve done a Versaille-like number on the poor pöpulation there aiming to skin them forever for their banks’ financial meltdown. Sorry, slight deviation there from the story, will have to tell you later, about m’sketching trip to Rome.
Trixi and Dirk Mecky invited me to have a show at Salon Schmitz in Cologne in October 2009. When we discussed the exhibition, Trixi said she would like about 100 paintings in the show and that I should mix all the different sorts of work I do. With the help of my friend, the painter, Bolan Chen, who came over from Japan specially, we drove over to Cologne with over 250 drawings/paintings. Trixi and Dirk made an initial selection and the artist, Walter Dahn, advised on how the show should be hung. The main hanging space in Salon Schmitz is a long 20m x 5m high wall. Walter’s idea was to have a lot of space, with a few large oil paintings on the first half of the wall and a crowded hang on the second half. I was pleased with the result and hope to post some photographs taken of the show soon. The exhibition, which I called “Pics for Schmitz”, ran from 30 October 2009 to 15 January 2010.
The hang in Cologne meant I had quite a few paintings spare, which I brought back in October and hung in the Magdalen Arms in Oxford, which more about later.
On the way back from Cologne, after the Pics from Schmitz show ended, I left some of the paintings and dubbed photographs from the exhibition in Belgium with Galerie Hoge Bomen, Veurne, for my exhibition there in August.
My plan was to rehang the pictures in the Anchor & Hope with the work I had brought back from Cologne. The last hang I put up there looked very chic, a double row of elegant black and white box frames, closely spaced, holding a set of dubbed photographs of Istanbul that I painted for Gilles Blaize’s film “Dreaming Istanbul”. [Read more…]