Kickin' it old school...as in 15th century old school... I now have my newest series of paintings and drawings on my website. These are works that are based in the botanical illustrations of the 16th and 17th centuries, but with a sexualized twist: certainly not suitable for all viewers, the Botanicae Amatorius are both erotic and humorous (granted, I have a dark sense of humor). The final paintings are done with gouache on calfskin parchment that has been stretched onto birch board: the calfskin is an exquisite surface for gouache - similar to the vellum used in 14th and 15th century manuscript pieces. Vellum, to be technical, is the skin from a stillborn calf, and it is available - but very expensive. The calfskin is similar, with a few more flaws on the surface (which I like), still a bit pricey, but not so rare to come by and most specialty calligraphy supply outlets have it available. I always gripe about reproductions, but I scanned the images on the site directly from the paintings and they are fairly accurate as far as color. What is lost is the subtle depth of space created by the calfskin - the gouache sits on the surface and light reflects through the layers of skin making the gouache quite luminous (the pigment does not sink into the surface like it would on paper). I recommend the calfskin highly for gouache aficionados; some of the most beautiful works of art, from the Book of Kells to Albrecht Dürer's studies were executed on vellum - not a medium to be missed (I will write more about the botanical artists at a later date - the juncture of science and art is a passion of mine).
If you are interested in seeing the new paintings and drawings, click the link below:
Quite a busy month ahead (aren't they all):
In conjunction with the South Orange Maplewood Studio Tour, the Pierro Gallery is holding its Preview / Post View exhibit. The opening is on Thursday, May 24th from 6 - 8 PM. Speaking of gouache, in the Preview / Post View, I will be showing a painting that I rarely exhibit:
Ah yes, this one is on paper, not as luminous as the calfskin pieces, but a little jewel of a painting nonetheless.
The studio tour is on Sunday, June 3rd, from 11 AM - 5 PM; everyone is welcome to attend and this year the tour is free...not a bad deal for seeing 60+ artists in their studios.
In the studio, I have started my first of two (maybe three) sybils:
This will be a 5 x 3 foot pencil drawing, the figure is slightly smaller than life size.
Last, but not least...
The latest Strange Tale, pencil on Moleskine sketch paper, 5.5 x 7 inches (this is on a double page of a smaller Moleskine sketchbook):
The Sisters and the Serpent
As always, the jpeg reproduction is on the flickr stream as well. For the studio tour, I am finishing up 5 of these that have been patiently waiting to emerge, and I will post them as they are completed.