Monday, September 28, 2015

Going the distance -- the Florence Biennale

 Wonder Water Series
polyptych, acrylic on coordinated canvasses
6 feet x 9 feet
Barbara Muir © 2015
Hi everyone,

I just signed off the forms to send my work to the Florence Biennale.
It is a strange feeling to go over your work with care (there have been
small changes since this photo), get it ready, and then try to
envision it going so far. But it's happening, and Mike at the
shipper has been so wonderful.

Now it's my turn.  How do I make the transition from uptight
artist, into international traveller, and get myself to the event?
Luckily this year I've travelled quite a bit, so it's not as
discombobulating as it would be if I hadn't been to Paris and
New York City.

I am crazy with excitement.  Cannot wait.  So here's the finished
product of what's going there -- to be presented as a unified
whole on the theme of our oceans.  I wish you could all be
there with me, and if you're going to be in Florence during the
Biennale, October 17 - 25, please let me know and I'll do my
best to get you tickets to the show!

In the meantime, where are you planning to go and show?

Have a charting-your-route day.

Monday, September 14, 2015

Listen to the pros -- behind the scenes in art land

 Untitled (work in progress)
acrylic on canvas
12 x 12 inches
Barbara Muir © 2015
I wish I could confidently show you my finished
painting of the lobster burger I had in Nova
Scotia looking out at the Wallace River.  But
it's taking me a long time to paint.  In fact it's
arduous.  Not painful.  But time consuming in
the extreme. 

In my frequent breaks I soak in the advice of the
pros.  The queen of tinfoil -- which is what is slowing
me down in this small painting -- is Canadian artist,
Mary Pratt.  Actually Mary Pratt is known for
taking the everyday -- jars of jam, bowls of fruit, tinfoil --
and making it glorious. She is the most famous Canadian high
realist.  And in an interview, she said that she
estimated at one point in her career that it would take
her six months to do a painting.
Sketch of a bouquet from the Brickworks market
Watercolour crayon, and black marker on paper
8 x 10 inches
Barbara Muir © 2015
I just got back from New York, and in the magnificent
Sargent exhibition at the Met, I read that for one painting
 he required 83 sittings!   Okay -- why is time such an
issue for us as painters now?

It's this -- it's the blog -- waiting like a dog that
needs a walk, for evidence that the artist is still
in the building.  I am.
Self portrait sketch
black marker on Moleskine paper
8 x 10 inches 
Barbara Muir © 2015
I also read a timely post by Danny Gregory about
getting out of practice called Mortified. He inspired
me to take another crack at sketching.  And keep
working and working, even when life is as jam
packed as mine has been lately.  So here
are some sketches, and a peak at my work so far.

Have a getting-to-work day.

Portrait Artist

My photo
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
I paint and draw on commission and for shows. To commission a portrait, or purchase one of my paintings please contact me at:
A major highlight in my career? Drawing Oprah Winfrey live via Skype for her show "Where in the Skype are you? Galleries: Studio Vogue Gallery, Toronto, Canada. The Amsterdam Whitney Gallery, New York City. Gallery at the Porch Door, Kingston, Canada. Your positive comments on this blog mean the world to me. I'd love to hear from you!