Saturday, September 05, 2009

Well the computer is now back, fixed and with a nice big hard drive, but of course I have to reload all of the software and everything, but it never goes smoothly does it? Oh no! Trying to get my email account to work properly and it won't send mail, but will pick up the new mail, so I may well have to ring technical support for some assistance, and eventually after three hours of talking to someone with an accent I can't understand, who has an imperfect understanding of the English vernacular, I may eventually get through to someone who knows what I want and can give me the 1 piece of information I have been trying to get for three hours! I HATE technical support! They always treat you as an idiot and ask the same stupid questions all the time. Have you tried switching it off and on again? Oh the ultimate solution to everything! Switch it off and on again! Of course that's the answer to everything!

Solution to the Middle East Crisis? Switch it off an on again!
World hunger? Off and on again.
Civil war in the Congo? Off and on again.

Sorry ranting now. And yes I am aware of the situation in the Congo and I'm not actually making light of the situation there, but I digress. Also I procrastinate.

Turner and Auerbach, my chosen subjects for my summer project, can I pull it off? And back on again.....oops sorry force of habit! Two fantastic landscape painters, Turner the father of abstract landscapes, Frank Auerbach, the damaged grandchild of the master. Mmmmm, I think I have the start of something there. The joy of living that Turner revelled in, with his travels, mistresses and general bigness of personality in a Brian Blessed kind of way (whenever I think of Turner I always have either Brian Blessed ot Leo McKern playing him!) and Frank Auerbach, displaced child of the Nazi pogroms, alone in the blitz ridden city of London, his world reduced over time to the bit of world that stretches from Mornington Crescent to Primrose Hill, his models his closest friends and almost nothing else to distract him from the purity of the forms and the feelings he wants to express on the canvas. His energy and vitality reserved for the heavy impasto on the canvas. Fabulous. Cool I may even be able to use some of that.

What has amazed me about Turner over the years, and I have to admit loving Turner from a very early age, is his ability to capture the light. I am beginning to understand how he does this, in his waterclours with the use of successive washes and scratching back, the precision of his finished paintings as opposed to the looseness of his watercolour sketches. He would fill 5 sketchbooks on a two week visit to his favourite places, and I was wondering how he did it, but now I understand how he managed. He would start with the loose, watery washes to create an impression of the landscape or more often the sea scape, and then would return to refine, define and create a more in depth painting, still working initially in watercolour all the time, until he was ready, had enough sketches and ideas to begin the work of the oil paintings. Although the various collections and bequests around the country, in Edinburgh and at the Clore Gallery all show the more refined watercolours, it is refreshing to me to find the initial sketches, in a copy of one sketchbook from 1845, showing his working technique and understanding the development of his ideas. I did have an epiphany with his composition at the new year when I went to Edinburgh, and kept notes of this, and now I am having the same kind of thought process while I am blogging. Great stuff! There is light and I can see it!

Now for an end to the chain of consciousness with reference to JMW Turner and back to ordinary life. Ah bugger it. That'll do for now.

Oh yeah the random picture is on the beach at Chapel St Leonards, I just thought it was an interesting image.


Jan Hopkins said...

Brian Blessed as Turner. LMAO. Love it!

The fearless threader said...

I always feel that anyone, especially artists who are reknowned for their large personalities should be played by Brian Blessed. Love him!