This Saturday November 10, 2018 – 25 artists will be at 232 Senneville, Qc, selling our art for a fundraiser benefiting Old Brewery Mission of Montreal. Doors open at 11 and close at 4. Here are my roosters painted in acrylic on canvas and framed. It is referred to as square art as all paintings are in this format. Hot soup, bread and a sweet are offered at 5$, please come and enjoy this private home on Lac-Saint-Louis, our art and lunch.
Under a full moon, 21 hours after leaving Québec City the Draken Harald Hårfagre arrived in Montréal, June 19th, 2016. Last evening the 20th of June was the start of summer solstice – hot, cloudy, windy with lightning and thunder. Unable to see the full moon here we must wait for the next summer solstice when they join together June 21, 2062. Fitting, this rare phenomena happens when this viking ship is in our city.
Yesterday, I arrived at Quay Jacques- Cartier at le Vieux-Port de Montréal to see this magnificent vessel. Unbelievable, a crew of 28 crossed the Atlantic Ocean in this slender wooden craft 34 metres by 7 metres!
I took my Venezia Sketchbook, Arches paper and my paint box with a few brushes. Here are some of my sketches. The hot record breaking weather and high winds presented their challenges but insignificant in comparison to the elements facing this ship and crew.
My sketchbook is a place to draw, experiment and enjoy. It a place where ideas germinate. Last year I sketched at the Cuckoo Trattoria garden in Coombs, BC and in Montréal, St.Louis Square.
The Cuckoo garden is intimate with buddha statues, lots of greenery, potted Japanese maples. A water fountain descends softly into an elongated pond. Time passes endlessly for me. But other visitors pause and leave quickly to have lunch, buy a plant or a garden ornament.
St. Louis Square (1876) is surrounded on 3 sides by Rue Du Square-Saint-Louis and the busy, Rue St. Denis. It is tranquil but has an air of excitement with colourful Victorian row houses, commercial shops, busts of Octave Crémazie and Émile Nelligan. Here children play, put their feet in the fountain while adults, dream, gossip or sleep on near by benches.
This spring, using my sketch book as reference I painted scenes from Cuckoo Trattoria garden. When I transfer my memories and watercolour sketches to canvas, I laboured over colour, proportions, representation. My sketchbook liberates these inhibitions, you are happy the weather is dry, happy the people relax and stay, happy the pencil and paint flow with easy.
Water is the current theme of an exhibition of paintings at The White Flag Gallery, from July 11-August 16, 2014. The below painting is my part of the gallery exhibition. If you are in or near Brockville,(Ontario) please visit, you will be warmly welcomed.
I love this sculpture of Barry Flanagan (1941-2009). He does not have the sophistication of horse and cougar, found in the lobby of Montréal Museum of Fine Arts*. He is a horse with attitude: swayed back and scrawny but still looking for action. A horse able to withstand the “polar vortex” we had this week in Montreal. You can drive or walk by this equine sculpture 7/24, no entrance fee, just there for our pleasure. * The sculpture has moved to the bronze section of MMFA.
The Kouros Horse ( bronze, 1986) is located on the corner of Stanley and Sherbrooke, 1130 Sherbrooke west.
My neighbour was a Brit and horsey. She told me that Munnings, considered one of the best equestrian painters, would lie under the steeplechase jumps so he could best feel and see the action. You can crawl around this equine without danger of a kick or bite. Take a look at the monogram “f’ and number 2/6 on the left hind hoof. There are 6 editions and 2 artist casts.
In Montréal, there are other outdoor equine sculpture to view 24 hours a day. George W. Hill (1862-1934) born in Shipton, Québec sculpted the Boer War Memorial and unveiled it in the spring of 1907. It still stands today in Dorchester Square, bordered by René Lévesque, Peel, Metcalfe. The riderless horse with a soldier restraining from the ground is unusual as most equestrian memorial are mounted. If the horse is mounted and has all four feet on the ground, it means the rider died of natural causes, if one foot is in the air, the rider died subsequent to wounds received in battle and if two feet in the air, the rider died during battle.
The outdoor sculpture by Fernando Botero, named The Volumptuous Man on Horse is located at the entrance to LHotel, 262 rue St. Jacques, Old Montreal. This rider is so privileged to be sitting on a calm horse that appears to requires no skills but good balance. Some would refer to him as a “hood ornament” similar to ones found on antique cars. It is ok to be vain when you are so beautiful.
As artists, we need to reach out to other sources to keep our creativity at a high peak. Often it is music, poetry, or going to an art gallery or museum which gives the extra boost.
Other times, we need to look at artists with multiple expertise and see how they manage. My first connection to Leonard Cohen was through his poems and music but lately I am looking at the simplicity of his drawing and imagery. Hambleton Galleries has a large selection of his works.
It is mentioned in a few articles that when he is at his Montréal home as he works on an old Québec pine table. This idea of simplicity and the need for few tools has my attention. I have this idea if I buy this brush or use this paint there will be a significant improvement in my art. Leonard Cohen reminds me to use pencil and paper. Draw and draw fequently.
The documentary, Picnic in the Park with Leonard Cohen , NFB of Canada by Pierre Tetrault is another indicator to enjoy the simple gestures in life.
Here is a pencil drawing of a favourite dog.