Saturday, December 12, 2009

Go the Train

I have just had a great pre-Christmas treat. On Wednesday I took the Overlander scenic train from Wellington to Auckland, a journey through the back country of the North Island of New Zealand which takes 12 hours. The last time I did this journey was about four decades ago! The scenery is spectacular, the seats comfortable, and the weather was warm and sunny. A real treat....

Hey.. wait for us! The engine change at Palmerston North.

Lunch break at Ohakune

The 'grunt' out front...

I flew back to Wellington on Friday afternoon. Next blog I will tell you what I did in Auckland, so stay tuned......

Monday, December 7, 2009

Finished, I think....

I now need to put my current piece away, and review it again perhaps in the New Year. At this point it is not mounted. I have this 'thing' rattling round in my head which is to work a series on past, and present, women who have made their mark in some way, starting with artists. I hope to depict various aspects of their life and/or work. To be honest this is a big vision and having completed one possible piece, I now need to take time out to think it all through further. I am reasonable happy where things are at this point but need more clarity and direction. Definitely something to contemplate on summer walks and working in the garden.

For this initial example I have taken the Mexican artist Frida Kahlo 1907 - 1954. I visited her exhibition at the Wellington City Gallery in 2000, enjoyed the film made of her life, and in 2006 was able to visit her home (now a museum) in Mexico City. I feel I 'know' her quite well.

In this piece I have used colours familiar in her work, the use of leaves depicted as blood red veins signifying her struggle with health problems throughout her adult life. The simple repeat pattern in the lower left corner is from one of her ethnic skirts, and she often placed banner ribbons with text in her work; this one has her signature.

Still not sure whether it is all working, but this is part of the process and, as such, I am sort of happy at this point.

Frida Kahlo, 25cm x 32cm (10" x 12½"), dye and pigment on silk and gauze.