Flower

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The Oresteia

The Oresteia is a three-play Greek tragedy written by Aeschylus. It consists of ‘Agamemnon’, ‘The Libation Bearers’, and ‘Eumenides.’ Chronologically speaking (if you can assign a chronology to Greek Mythology in the first place…), it’s one of the last stories to take place in the world of classical Greek Mythology (The Heroic Age? I guess that would be a better name for it. We live in the age AFTER the Heroic Age, the fifth age of the world; the age where gods no longer mix with mortals. More on that some other time, I promise). It’s post Trojan War and tells the story of Agamemnon’s return home, his murder, and the subsequent revenge taken by his children, particularly his son, Orestes. Of course the gods get involved, and it gets a lot more complicated, not to mention, well, tragic.

Anyhow, I don’t know how much of the plot I should really discuss here, because it’s definitely worth the read. And I mean, a thousand years ago when I used to make book covers all the time, it was with the hope of creating an interest in the story itself. And hopefully that’s the case with the three illustrations I made for the Oresteia. This story messed me up! In the best way! Got my imagination all fired up and I hope that comes across in the images and… maybe.. just maybe… does it toooo… YOU?!

Long story short, you should get a good translation and read the Oresteia! Or if you can time it right, go see them being performed somewhere! (Wouldn’t that be nice…)

So these three images sort of fall exactly into the middle of the stories. It was a scene from Libation Bearers that inspired this, though it’s not so terribly specific. They are each intended to be able to stand alone while still working together as a coherent set. The colours are carried through all three, as well as the set pieces. There is a tableau-ish quality to them, alluding to the fact that they are originally plays.

I did a rough draft of them in gouache, which admittedly is pretty close to the finals, but the final images are the final images. I’m actually very happy with how these turned out. I’m a little surprised that they’re almost exactly what I pictured. That, uh, doesn’t happen very often (though it has been happening more and more lately…).

Going from rough sketches to finals.

The originals are quite small, only 5″x7″, but I made them with the intention of making prints on a larger scale for the ’18 Artist Project. Scroll back a couple posts to see them! They’re on the Death Wall.

The framed prints that were up at the ’18 Artist Project.

And finally, the final paintings!

‘The Chorus’

‘Orestes and Electra’

‘Agamemnon’s Tomb’

The Artist Project 2018

Hi! Long time, no see! Well I exhibited at the Artist Project again this year. How about we start with some setup shots?

A little bleak at the moment…

Organizing my thoughts.

I had a crack team helping out.

Nearly there!

I was in a corner booth, giving me four walls of hanging space… I organized them as follows:

The outside wall acted as the gateway… Mars and Venus guide you through landscapes and plein-air studies from the real world Florence into my imagined world of Mythology.

Of the interior walls, first I had the Underworld; the Infernal Realm.

Next was the world of the sky; the Celestial Realm.

Oh, I’ll post some close-ups of these ones soon… but you gotta wait.

And finally the earth, the world that humankind inhabits; the Terrestrial Realm.

Pretty neat, huh?

The Artist Project

The 2017 Artist Project show was February 23 – 26 this year. And hey, whaddaya know? I was in it! It was a really good weekend of talking about art, meeting new people (hey, maybe you’re reading this because you came by my booth! Thanks for visiting my website!), and having a chance to show my work to a lot of people who have never seen it before!

I put up my favourites of my 2015 Italy paintings and two tantalizingly new pieces… Two mythology-based paintings which are the beginning of a whooole new body of work. Exciting, don’t ya think? Take a look at my setup!

Setup was on my birthday. Thanks go to Nina for this one!

My booth as a whole. Very simple, clean setup. See that trunk though? Makes you feel warm, doesn’t it? Kinda homey, isn’t it? You might say it… really ties the room together.

Lookit that grin! Grinning like a fool! Thanks to Nikki for taking this!

Looks Like My Paintings Have Gone PUBLIC!

Get it??

Well you don’t have to get it, CAUSE THEY’RE THERE! At Coffee Public down at ol’ College and Bay in dirty ol’ Toronto! Ain’t that nice? I think it’s nice…

My paintings have come down back at Starving Artist, but these DIFFERENT paintings from Italy are now up fer yer viewing pleasure! And coffee pleasure! Go on, go and have a coffee! I dare ya. And get a muffin, too. Or even a cookie. Cause CHANCES ARE I made those, too!

But let’s get back to the paintings! Rather than my landscapey plein-air bros, these are specifically of the statues in Florence. From my faaaaavourite place in Florence! Yes, even more so than the Museo La Specola, and yes, I know that sounds outrageous, but hear me out. Wait, where was I? Oh yeah, they’re from the Loggia Dei Lanzi in Piazza Della Signoria. But I’ve talked about this place befooooorrre. Just scroll on back through the blog a little bit! So anyhow, I thought they’d look real good on the concrete pillars at Coffee Public!

Pillars

Oh this painting, THIS PAINTING, is the SECOND LAST one that I did in Italy! Just the night before I left! Powerful fuggin stuff, bros.

Oh this painting, THIS PAINTING, is the SECOND LAST one that I did in Italy! Just the night before I left! Powerful fuggin stuff, bros.

Some fun facts about these paintings… They were all painted in the middle of the night in a goddam gigantic and empty plaza in the heart of the friggin city of Florence! Ohhhh man, was it beautiful. Get up and coffee-up in the morning, wander and paint all afternoon (possibly in a museum), come home and make dinner, cool the frig off, take er easy fer a bit, get the ol’ travel setup ready to go and roll outta the house around 11… Set up in the piazza around midnight juuuuust when the place empties out of tourists and then, bros… BROS. Beautiful night of painting aheada ya. Definitely helps that half of the goddam sum of Western art is like 25 feet away within the walls of the Uffizi. *Sigh* It was g r e a t .

Starving Artist Shows Recent Work at Starving Artist

I shouldn’t say that. I eat pretty well. Mostly coffee and donuts, but like, a lot of coffee and donuts. Like, no shortage. It’s also not really something to joke about. But we’re getting way off-topic here…

I’ve got some paintings on display right now! Can you believe it? Me! Showing my paintings? Noooo… but yeah! Totally am, bro! Some paintings from my pilgrimage-thing to Italy from last Summer are up at Starving Artist on Lansdowne! Right here in sunny* Toronto.

*It’s definitely been sunny at some point. It has happened. I’m reasonably sure of this.

Right up until these went up on the walls a grand total of approximately (I say approximately cause when you’re dealing with number that are this astronomical… well… accuracy is nearly impossible) 5 people had ever seen them. So pretty rad to think these were NEVER-BEFORE-SEEN paintings! And I suppose there’s also the fact that they’ve got my goddam heart and soul mixed right in with the paint… you know, if you like that kind of thing.

There are ten of them! Go take a look! Have a great breakfast while you’re at it! Starving Artist definitely comes Corey-recommended. What the hell have you got to lose?

Always beware of reflections when taking cellphone pictures...

Always beware of reflections when taking cellphone pictures…

This statue looks awfully familiar, doesn't it?

This statue looks awfully familiar, doesn’t it?

I promised myself I'd go back and take better pictures at some point. I didn't do that.

I promised myself I’d go back and take better pictures at some point. I didn’t do that.

Threefer

Fiori

Ercole

But yo, if we can be real for a second here, it’s time for a confession… I have a pretty hilariously small amount of experience with hanging paintings. Keep in mind I tried. Oh, I did try. But these aren’t perfectly¬†straight. Maybe even a little lopsided and uneven. There, I said it. Now you know. Ha! But what are YOU gonna do about it? I friggin dare ya to go in there with a level and see if they don’t tell ya to siddown, shaddap and order some goddam waffles. That’s what I thought, waffles or gtfo.