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This Past Year - In Summary

Phill 03/24/15 0 News

For the past year my website has been a showcase of my abilities and the versatility of the areas in which I can work with oils. This coming year I hope will see a return to my work in graphite portraits, in areas I worked with in the distant past - from my school days, painting geometric art with water colours.

In revisiting my school days I hope to work with some rather interesting media, such as poster paints on cartridge paper, a particularly favoured media of mine as a youth, especially when combined with silk screen printing. I have several ongoing projects in oil on canvass and hope to continue my major project of painting portraits of band members from Hawkwind and Led Zeppelin. Of course my focus on maritime/aviation art will not diminish, I have a few dramatic paintings on the back burner so to speak and no doubt they will come to the fore as time progresses.

The response and feedback received over the last year has been very encouraging and far beyond my expectations, prompting me to set up additional web pages, from where I will be able to sell prints of and/or my original work. I'm disappointed to report that I haven't produced anything of note during the past 8 months, this being due on the whole to unforeseen events concerning my family life.

Last year saw us uprooting from our family home in Brazil to life anew in the USA, to then struggle our way through the US bureaucratic system and its many obstacles, which I can only describe as obstructive, very stressful and certainly not conducive to creativity on any level....added to which was a very trying and negative situation with US Immigration Officials.

The over-all USA experience had a very profound effect on my morale and my drive to produce, however, I continued to show my work at any given opportunity and this endeavour brought its rewards with exhibitions at Miami and New York yet again.

It was back to Guaruja, Brazil in November 2014 for my wife and I, preparing for the mad rush of that forthcoming festive season, visiting relatives and friends, then travelling in January to the South of Brazil to experience the real beauty that Brazil has to offer. I tend to look upon this as a period of regeneration and well earned recuperation from the trials of the USA, as recently borne out in a refreshed hunger to paint and create.

On returning we stayed with our friends in Sao Paulo, one friend of which assisted the famous Brazilian artist Luis Paulo Baravelli. During my stay I was fortunate to have been given the opportunity to meet Baravelli and what an inspirational meeting it was. Baravelli is a renowned abstract artist whose work from 1962 spans more than 50 years and being entirely related to his life experience and relationships. His grand master (as he says) is Picasso and it shows in Baravelli's work, although somewhat unique in that he uses beeswax, palm wax and palm resin as his paint medium, on plywood as opposed to canvass.

This particular paint medium had originally been used by the Ancient Egyptians in painting the coffins and death masks of their Pharaohs. Baravelli commented to me that his work would last for at least 3,000 years, just as the ancient Egyptian work had stood the test of time, lasting to the present day. I was shown a world in abstract that I had only once considered upon leaving school, it was a most invigorating and inspirational experience, to physically visit and meet with the man himself and experience his work first hand.

Baravelli is a highly intelligent individual with great insight into how the world works, distinctively shown in the way he portrays it. A very well read man too as his library proved and I was able to see where his influences, in terms of his art, had stemmed from. He gave me a gift upon leaving his studio and library, a book of the complete stories of J G Ballard (the Science Fiction writer), prompted by me mentioning in conversation that J G Ballard had been a major influence on the poet/songwriter Robert Calvert's work, both as a solo musician and with the band Hawkwind.

I gained a great insight into what it is to be a true and talented artist. This person who had battled his way through life, struggling yet persevering, remaining true as an artist, against all odds, in a competitively demanding market and despite the whims of critics (I have no time for these people - something that will show in future blogs).

I do hope that you will enjoy the new material when it is displayed in my gallery and please continue to send your comments and feedback.

Thank you and blessings to all.