Essentially all of my recent paintings were hanging in the Hammertown Gallery. My studio was looking quite empty and feeling a bit lonely. The only wall that remained populated was the screen on which I had hung my painter's smock (once a French farmer's smock), assorted scarfs, and one of my favorite Picasso posters of a seated circus performer. The other walls were pretty bare.
Giving Picasso's young man some company struck me as the right way to begin a restoration. Across from him, I hung a large poster that I had recently gotten at a Lucien Freud exhibition, at the Aquavella Gallery in Manhattan (click here for a link to that exhibition site). It is a reproduction, in a very enlarged form, of "Head of a Man" that Freud had drawn in charcoal, in 1986. The poster was a nice reminder of a great drawing exhibition and a wonderfully inspiring image.
Then, I pulled from storage a painting I had done many years ago at the National Academy of Design school. In it was of one of the most delightful models we worked with in class. Nice to have her in the room again.
I dug even deeper into my storage area. I found a collection of small paintings that I had done in Maine over a number of years. Since we hadn't been to Maine since 2008 and were not going again this year, it was great to pull out some of these pieces and be reminded of that wonderful light and air, and beautiful sky and water. On rainy, dreary days in Pine Plains, it will be great to look over at these and remember how it smelled and how warm and bright the sun could be. As a special bonus from this cache, I even found another friend for my wall.
And so, the last wall was done as a temporary backdrop for a new still life that I have just begun arranging. I like that another favorite model and two earlier still life paintings are keeping watch over it as I work.