Saturday, 31 January 2015

Francesco Guardi

Francesco Guardi A Young Girl of the Gradenigo Family with a Dove c.1768–1770
Oil on canvas, 149.5 x 98.7 cm
Collection: Amgueddfa Cymru – National Museum Wales
I like the fact that it connects with my own work. But I was also fascinated by the fact that the two paintings, this one and its partner, a boy portrait, are separated. One in Wales, one in Massachusetts, where my daughter was living at the time, and both painted in Venice, where she will be next year.

Steffan Jones Hughes


My drawings began quite tentatively. I love the weird dog in the bottom left, almost looks like a teddy, that might lead me somewhere…
You can see that I started to get interested here in the theatrical framing of the figure. I love the tree on the right, reminds me of one that I’ve seen before in Ken Kiff’s paintings. The confidence of looking at the subject matter, rather than the source material, and just drawing is beginning to happen here……


I did a quick drawing of a pattern I found on the dress. I really liked it, so I began to think about how it would look in repeat. Like most things for me, I like to really explore ideas that might at first seem completely unrelated to my final pieces, and I don’t usually work from another artwork in this way, so it’s been a really important process for me to keep returning to the original piece in order that I feel I’m really looking and really aware of what is going on. Interestingly, in the gallery in Cardiff, it is really quite hard to see any of the detail, the work is hung high on a wall and has a significant amount of reflection, there is also a wall that prevents you from viewing the work from further away.

I like the way the trees frame the work, something I’ll return to later……….

Continues on my page..

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