Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Only two more sleeps to go

Clint Eastwood, Film Still, "The Good, the Bad and the Ugly" shot around Mojacar.

As many of my long time followers know, I was fortunate enough to be awarded a residency at the end of 2010 to go to Mojacar, Spain. Much work and saving later, I am finally leaving for that trip - with other added travel - this Friday evening (Sydney time) 25th March.
First stop is London for nine whole days. I've never been there, and have already mapped out a punishing schedule of gallery hopping. Everything from the National Gallery, The Courtauld Institute, Tate Modern (of course), Haunch of Venison etc etc. And I hope to do a few touristy things too.
After London, I fly to Spain for the month long residency, which I will share with seven other international artists. All I have to do is turn up for dinner (pre dinner drinks and wine included) but otherwise I'm free. Free to work in the studio supplied, walk the Olive groves, take a trip to Clint Eastwood Spaghetti Western Country, sketch the desert or hop on the local bus and take in the beach and the colours of Andalucia.Only problem is, th epostage of Materials was prohibitive, and the baggage allowance small (I fly Easyjet between countries) so I am restricted in what I can attempt whilst there.
I hope to muse - a lot! - and get my head together about my work, life and loves and come back renewed for some wonderful creative work.
And because Morocco is so close, I'm taking a tour there (single female travelling) for about 16 days, doing the loop from Casablanca to Marrakech, riding camels in the Sahara, viewing the land from the heights of the Atlas Mountains and, no doubt, getting lost in the markets. I'll be taking just a photo or two along the way, with my newly purchased and newly arrived Canon Powershot G12.
I then fly to Madrid, to see what I haven't seen during the residency, spend days in the Prado and other great museums, and then drive in a long, slow route via Seville, Cordoba and Granada to Barcelona, via as many small medieval towns as I can get to and enjoy. Once in Barcelona, I'll be visiting another Museum or two over the next few days, trying also to get the measure of the local commercial gallery scene and be inspired by what's available there. I then fly to Paris for three nights, to see what I missed thew first time (including the Pompidou Centre) and straight to Heathrow and home.
I might also be a bit naive, but I am taking my sketch book with me, with visions of sitting in front of Goya's "May 13th" Painting and going for it - with tears in my eyes, no doubt. Well - if not Goya, then Picasso's "Guernica" or anywhere and everywhere I can get a decent view to see with new eyes the great paintings of old. friends, here's the place to check out every so often as I hope to post my travels and findings on Art to this blog, as regularly as internet access will allow. Be prepared for a few postings at once - I have been told that at the residency, I need to upload my emails on to a CD for Batch mailing on the computer at night time! Don't like the chances of WiiFii here.... but there must be some in town.
I've never taken a trip this long before, let alone been away from painting for more than a few weeks - I figure it's my long service leave.

I promise plenty of stories, photos and maybe even a sketch or two....
Any last minute suggestions of "must see" places in any of the above would be gladly appreciated (I've included all the major ones, but any little treasures would be great)
Take care and keep safe.

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