Saturday, April 25, 2015

Diana's Little Venice Party

A new painting: 
Diana's Little Venice Party
9" x 7"     oil on linen     2015
Private Collection, New York

In this painting, I limited my palette to a harmony of red and grey; the tones of red on the left side (and the background) are balanced with the grey tones on the right. The woman's black mask and the man's red mask create a counterpoint. I initially thought to use more colors, but as I went along, the blues and greens and yellows that I tried never seemed right.

This painting began with a quick sketch - a doodle really - of a woman wearing a pair of peacock feathers ... my private homage to a beautiful exhibition at the Hudson River Museum last Fall on the theme of the peacock in art.

initial sketch
6 1/2" x 5"     ballpoint on paper     2014

I developed the idea to include three more figures.

drawing #2
5 3/4" x 6 1/2"     pencil on graph paper      2014
Private Collection, Massachusetts

And seven drawings later - perhaps ironically - the figure that started the process, was no longer in the final composition. I liked the compactness of the trio.

final drawing
9" x 7"      pencil on graph paper with pastel tone on reverse      2015


  1. Love this new small painting. Red & gray has always been one of my favorite combos. And love the trio rather than quartet. What does "pastel tone on reverse" on your drawing mean?

  2. Thank you, Allison!
    As to your question: When the drawing is worked out fairly well and is the final size - I use it to transfer the image to the canvas. I'll cover the reverse side of the paper with pastel, then place it over the canvas and trace the lines ... the pastel then essentially acts like old-time carbon paper.



"There is more power in telling little than in telling all."
- Mark Rothko

“The mind loves the unknown. It loves images whose meanings are unknown, since the meaning of the mind itself is unknown.”
- Magritte

"Now, the idea is to get everything right -- it's not just color or form or space or line -- it's everything all at once."
- Richard Diebenkorn

“What I am seeking is not the real and not the unreal but rather the unconscious,
the mystery of the instinctive in the human race.”
- Amedeo Modigliani