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This painting was inspired by a love note written in 1946, by Edith Piaf, the late french singer to her younger lover, Greek actor Dimitris ‘Takis’ Horn. It is not actually their love story that inspired me, but the content of that particular note.
Part of the note reads;:
“…I love you like I’ve never loved before. Taki, please don’t let my heart die..”
Now, that was the part that really captivated me. She wrote it so poetically that one can feel the passion in her heart. I really felt that passion; and that’s what made me put it in oil on canvas. La Vie en Rose is the title of one of the songs by the late singer; and I named the painting so.
According to the Greek Auction, the note was sold to a private collector in Athens for almost £1, 500. I think it worth even more.
And there we have it.
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Look there, at the starry night, you said to me
Each star twinkles, telling you of its existence
Hanging farther up the moon, alive and well;
Look at that straw; you pointed to the barn
It grows fresh, green, slim grass out of it
Continuity, you say, is life’s incorruptible nature
And a constancy no man would dare question
So life is good, my boy
You must continue thriving in its course
Never you give up until you change the world
Make choices, make peace, make compromises
Make your world a heaven.
I held on to your words; and to life; how happy.
I made choices, I made peace, I compromised
I gaze at the stars and ignored the moon
The straw sounded silly, yet, I respected it
But this moment changed everything
Here am I standing by your grave, in silence
The life you cherished has made you old and weak
That life you cherished has eased itself out of you
And left you to rot and turn to earth.
Should I cry
Should I not
Should I be angry, pleased, indifferent
Should I not
Should I end my life and taste death as you did
Should I not
So I turned on to Life
But Isn’t it too selfish
That life defied all the rigours of our time
And the time past; still, invisible and silent
Yet, make us all old and weak and die; and decay
Holding on to ticking clocks on our walls and wrists
Isn’t it so unfair
That it makes the fool out of us
Watching with calm, our pathetic lives move swiftly
While it smiles whenever we think it is moving fast against us.
Isn’t it all clear
That the four seasons never increased
Reduced or change in the nature of each
And the seas remain black, blue and red
Not even yellow, purple or pink
Isn’t it curious,
That the sun never ceases to shine and rise
Never it hovers only between the north and south
Look at the stars, are they sparkling green and red
Like the neon lights in down town Manhattan
What has life to offer me before I join you
A heart beat, a breath, some sleep, sun, stars
No valour goes there
The valour I need comes from me
I must move on.
And while you rest your soul in the afterlife
I’ll keep making choices and compromises
For peace, I won’t promise that
If I don’t fight with others, I’ll fight within me
I need the valour. Peace comes after one has it.
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Last time, I talked about the first few steps in appreciating painting. I said the unlooker should consider the following simple tips:
That Painting is a product of inner reality; and he should understand that there exixts a difference between the Act of creation and understanding.
Now, the next thing to do is to build the association further by observing Pictoral elements that make up the pictire he’s looking at.
- Observe the pictoral element
Next is to build the association further by observing all the elements that up the picture. Understanding them will help one know how a picture is drawn and put together. In fact, pictoral elements analysis is put upfront in making art judgments and criticisms. Pictoral elements are many but their application depends on the artists’ inner feeling and nature of painting. Some of them are as follows;
This is the medium through which the artist wishes to exteriorize a concept. Every painting has a subject, and while a subject is a mean of transmission for the artist, it is for the spectator, a form of reception. Subjects may be representational i.e. may take the pretext of an object familiar to us such as a human being, an animal etc, or non representational i.e. takes the pretext of an unfamiliar objects such as spirals, cubes, etc. for example, in his recent canvases, Joe Musa, D.G. of National Art Council Lagos, studied women and thus, used them as media to exteriorize a concept.
Centre of interest
This is the area in the painting where the artist tries to attract your attention. It is the part of the picture where the principal action takes place. One of Joe Musa’s paintings titled ‘from the market’ portrays a woman (subject) coming from the market with a basket containing some food stuff. That constituted the centre of interest.
This is the most important task of a painter and the ability to accomplish this, gives both the artist and the onlooker, more than any other quality, a sense of fulfillment and well being. This simply means arranging all elements of design; the figures or object, in a manner which makes the picture a harmonious and satisfactorily whole. This gives a certain feeling to the onlookers e.g. the classical atmosphere of a landscape, romantic atmosphere of still life, etc.
This is the manner which the artist applies the paint on the canvass. It is determined by the rhythmic movements of the artists’ hands using the brush. Some brush works may be light which suggests softness, while others may be heavy with heavy impasto suggesting weight or solidity. Every artist has his own style of brush work. It is like handwriting that differs with individuals.
Volume and masses
These refer to visual effects of properties these terms indicate in nature. For example, a green tree that forms a mass in the sky is a ‘mass of green’. The volume of the same tree is the ‘bulk’ of the tree.
This is the term used to describe the relation of different part of the picture to the distribution of light. The distribution doesn’t take the actual colour into consideration, but its intensity.
Other pictoral elements include atmosphere, perspective solidity etc.
It is also important to understand that every picture is a combination of varying degrees of emotion and intellectual ideas subordinated to a central feeling. So pay a visit to an art gallery today and experience the pleasure, warmth and emotion packed in paintings. Buy a painting today and add an incredible beauty and warmth to your home or office.