September was full to bursting right to the very end, so its last story is October's first one.
My painting show of work inspired by Iceland opened last week and it was such a happy event! Lots of people came and there was great enthusiasm! For my part, I felt as if the work was a kind of breakthrough to a way of painting that felt personal, quirky, and real... to me. What anyone else thought/thinks of it is beyond my power to arrange. So the enthusiasm was surprising and very much appreciated.
Here's the artist statement I was asked to write to accompany the show:
I’ve recently returned to painting after a several-year hiatus spent drawing, sketching, and maintaining an art blog with an international following.
Inspired by the primordial grandeur of Iceland, I’ve struggled to find an idiom that would express what I experience in that country. I’m not interested in making traditional landscape paintings, but the landscape motif is hard to avoid entirely when you are dealing, no matter how abstractly, with land forms and masses and the elements that shape them.
Earth, air, fire, and water... these fuel the Icelandic drama, in some way, every day. There the life force, or chi, is practically audible, visible, and tangible.
I am still in the process of trying to express what I feel there---and I will be for a long time to come.
Here are some shots of the installation, as well as some images of a few of the individual paintings. The relative sizes of these images do not correspond to the relative sizes of the real things. I had to compress some to make this post less bulky.
All of the work is acrylic on board. The sizes range from 18" x24" to 11" x 14".
Four pieces from my 2012 volcano series are included in the show.
Many people were generous in their responses to the work. I loved my Icelandic friend Snorri Villafuerte Valsson's unsoliticed comments --the fact that these pieces felt somehow right to him means a LOT:
"Gritty and vivid paintings of Icelandic landscapes, I love them all. Laura catches the beauty of our nature but doesn´t forget to add the rugged part that is so unique for Iceland."
So, there we are... the last of September's big events brought to a happy, happy conclusion! I am over the moon about all of them and I look forward to my December trip to northern Norway. Who knows what paintings will come from those dark and brooding land forms and that palely luminous arctic night?