Raw Siena

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Here is another collage, like A Debt in Venice, meant to integrate ideas from my Italian junket (actually my IDSVA residency!) with work that I have already been doing. In this case, I reused a panel that was an abstracted landscape painting (in acrylic) and added a photographic element. In this case, the photo was of a marble sculpture of the Graces in the Piccolimini Library at the Duomo in Siena that I took. I removed the frescos that appeared behind the Three Graces, turning them into the Tuscan blue sky, not because they weren’t fantastic, but because I was inspired by them in a rather peculiar way. I layered thin paper over everything. It gave a nice tooth, and then I repainted certain sections (which are more vivid).
Because the spectacular frescos [http://www.wga.hu/frames-e.html?/html/p/pinturic/siena/] gave one a sense of being inside and outside a the same time, I wanted to depict the Graces also as being inside and outside simultaneously. Something struck me about the three-dimensional ladies living in a room whose walls were covered with two-dimensional depictions of space. So, I wanted to show the ladies in an inside-outside landscape, with the architectural elements behind them as a kind sham ruin. Note that the arches are “real” in that they are the actual architectural elements of the library wall and ceiling, but they are also depicted in the frescos, so the “real” interior extends illusionistically into the frescos. I’m planning to go further in this exploration of interior exteriors, but I need to make some more images. Writing helps clarify ideas; it sets the stage, so to speak, for what ultimately needs to be expressed visually.

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