20 November 2009

An olive tree's Orthodox dream...

Here is a variation on the olive tree painting I made earlier this week. This is a second painting reworking the request from Mary Antonakos on the subject of our friend Diane Katsiaficas. I am very pleased with the original, but when I was writing the blog post for it, I thought of a different approach.
What we have here is essentially the same painting as An olive tree's dream... which I posted earlier this week. It has the same subject matter, the same composition, same basic colors (I didn't even clean my palate), I just decided to force a byzantine style onto it.
One of the things that Diane and I have in common is that we both love, and are heavily influenced by, Byzantine art. Why not reference this?
Here,I imitated elements from paintings of the Eastern Orthodox World that spanned more than 1,500 years. Almost all Byzantine work is about figure, so this is unusual. I poured through several books of Byzantine art studying the sparse backgrounds. (Something I loved doing). Beth was unimpressed by the original birds I put in the sky, so tonight she paged though hundreds of images to find better birds for me to reference. She was right so I changed them. (But turned down her suggestion of adding the ominous black bird that looks over St. John the Theologian's shoulder as he writes Revelations on Patmos).
The actual painting of this came very easily to me. This is a style that I love but have never attempted to adhere to strictly. Very fun for a me (believe it or not)!
One thing this blog does is give me plenty of painting exercise. It 's keeping my art muscles fit. (... where ever they may live).

Since this painting has no owner, I'm going to send it to Diane Katsiaficas. There is nothing better than sending someone unsolicited art. Right?

Thank You Mary Antonakos for starting this ball of wax.

...and thank you to whichever part of my obsessiveness it may have been that made me explore this again.

1 comment:

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