My painting show above will be participating in a group show near Milano. Organized by the Independent Artists group of Busto Garolfo (MI), the show Faces: I Volti dell’Uomo will explores the idea of identity related to portraiture and its relation to experience. It opens November 24th and runs until December 16th. Please stop by to see the work if you happen to be in the area. The Villa Brentano, where the show will be held, is very special as well.
An artist’s materials are an extension of him/her. They are the bridge that link the first creative impulse to the final work of art. Naturally, that is why artists can be very discerning about the supplies they use. I have spent years researching art materials and creating my own in order to reproduce the effects that I see in the Old Masters and, more importantly, enrich my own work.
Charcoal is one of the oldest drawing mediums still commonly used today. It is ideal for tonal drawing. Produced by pyrolysis, it is created by heating up wood in the absence of oxygen.
I make my own with a steel box that I designed especially for the purpose. After cutting select wood into a stick form, the pieces are placed in the box and closed. An single opening on the top allows the gas to escape. The box is heated up and eventually smoke comes out. The white smoke is largely water vapor and other some other substances. Eventually the smoke diminishes, stops and is replaced by a flame that is produced by different essences being expelled. Once the flame dies out, the charcoal is ready!
My friend and artist Darren Rousar also wrote an article on making charcoal and it can be found here.
I also have taught an artisan in Southern, Italy my method and he is now creating a small quantities for a commercial market. He uses reclaimed wood and selects the best pieces to for his production. The result is very high quality charcoal with a minimum environmental impact. If anyone is interested in trying some, please contact me.
I am happy to announce that I will be opening a teaching atelier in my new studio in Florence, Italy. A wide range of study options will be available to students of all levels.
Full time study is organized in a classical atelier environment emphasizing a personalized development made possible by a concentrated class size: maximum enrollment of 4. An interdisciplinary approach is encouraged. In addition to the standard curriculum, students will have opportunity to pursue artistic anatomy, composition, sculpture and printmaking.
Throughout the year, short courses, weekend classes and workshops will explore specific historic techniques such as: sight size oil portraiture, fresco painting, pastel painting and portrait sculpture. Visiting internationally known figurative artists will be invited to teach workshops as well.
The space is quite special. It is purpose built 19th Century historic studio constructed for the Florentine painter Michele Gordigiani. His famous pupil, Giovanni Boldini also worked in the same space where students will complete their projects under natural north light.
For more information please visit my course page here.
The above painting will be participating in a group show that opens this Friday at the 33 Contemporary Gallery in the Zhou Art Center in Chicago. The Chronicles of a Future Foretold is a Poets & Artists exhibition curated by Samuel Peralta. The selection of work explores where figurative art intersects with prevalent themes found in science fiction.
For more information about the show the link is here.
To order a copy of the Poets & Artists publication the link is here.
I will be organizing ongoing fresco painting courses and private lessons in Florence, Italy. Students will learn about one of the most durable mediums for painting: fresco. The full process will be explored including: the preparation of the support, colors and cartoon. Taking advantage of the unique abundance of fresco painting in Florence, site visits to various chapels, churches and museums will enlighten the student to the aesthetic possibilities offered by this wonderful medium.
Please email me for more information or fill out the contact form below:
Drawing of Jon, graphite on paper, 15cm x 20cm
Support panel with rough coat of plaster.
Application of ‘intonico’
Image transferred via ‘incisione’ method to the finished ‘intonico’ and ‘velo’ coats
I am very pleased to share that my painting “The Young Architect” has been included in the #93 Eros Gaze publication of Poets Artists Magazine. It is a wonderful mix of literary and visual metaphor created by Didi Menendez. Print issues of the Eros Gaze are available via Blurb at the following link here.