Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Fall Semester-Week 8 Vincent Desiderio and Juliette Aristides Workshops

This was a great week and busy week at school, it was a great week to be a student at PAFA and reminded me of why I am glad I chose this place--as we had with two great workshops by two of the academies former students who have gone one to be come two of the biggest figurative artists and painters working today, Juliette Aristides and Vincent Desiderio. I was once again one of the monitors for Vince's two-day workshop, the 4th of his workshops I've attended here at the school. While being a monitor might crimp my painting time in the workshop it gives me more off-peak one-on-one time with Vince before, after and during the lunch break. Vince comes twice a year to do these workshops and I think that says a lot about him as a person, even more than about him as an artist. Vince charges you up, feeds your head with so much good art-talk and history, theory and his enthusiasm just fills the room and everyone there like a vessel that overflows with art and goodness. In the big Art World where there is a lot of nastiness and ugliness, jealousy and outright crap and BS its great to get the perspective both figuratively and literally from an artist in the battle every day. He really invests in each person and relates to you almost as a pier, no big ego, no attitude--he wants us all to join him. He takes the Modernists to the mat, as he lectures and demos on the formal, theoretical, conceptual and the technical narrative of painting. He's brilliant, plain and simple, but it's an honest brilliance, a well crafted and well well thought out and historical brilliance. Here is a bit from one of his discussions during the workshop. "Great technique is on the brink of collapsing under the weight of it's own daring. Like starring at a man on a high wire--is he going to fall? And he doesn't fall. He feels painting has to be a fruit-full ground, free of the neo-cons of "contemporary figurative crap" or neo-cons who do "conceptual crap". Vince is a painter who wants to see into the future, the possibility of where painting can go.Whatever the color or temperature of your light mass is it's going to force your eye to see the shadow as it's opposite. Even though I have heard him speak on the subjects of tonality, perspective and seen him do the demo's it never get's boring, it's like a prayer or an affirmation to see this and him working again. I think because I have done the workshops before I can understand better and concentrate on other aspects and not feel overwhelmed. Vince started by giving is talk and then his demo. he talked about the history of painting and how artists came to solve the problems of staying active and current while still having traditional skills.
Vince did a chalk talk where he discussed the four zones of light in a painting.
The Model of Tonality 1. The incidence of reflection (highlight-which always has a shift to the cool) 2. The light mass. 3. The turning ( terminator) 4. The shadow (which are neutral and like mirrors and who's color can change depending on the light mass.)
He also talked about local color and chroma which is the color of the light and how we must know the difference as painters. When you observe the model keep this model in your head to help organize what you are seeing--which is form with a capital F and that takes over from the analogue of perspective.
Then Vince did his demo for the first day after we worked from the model. and shellaced our drawings using amber shellac to seal in the drawing. Working in what essentially is like a warm grisaille, though not exactly that he did a demo in which he really loaded in the shadows and then loaded in the light mass and worked away from the incidence of reflection across the form toward the shadow, just warming the color before the terminator as the form rolls into the shadow,
Here is the final demo where Vince worked over a drawing by one of the students . The lucky student got to keep the demo to boot!
The next day after another talk and reviewing peoples work Vince did another demo, this time drawing on a piece of museum board, it was fun to just watch him draw a figure out of his head in a similar pose to the one our model had taken. After he finished i took the drawing and shellaced it.
The final state of the demo. You can really see how he moves the temp of the light as he moves across the form into the shadow. if you really study his paintings you can see even after he adds more color he still works this way building the light mass so the paintings have a glow.
Marie Manski who was the other monitor during the workshop with Desiderio.
Here is my painting from the worshop. I never get to really finish it the way i want--its always more like a drill to try and employ what I'm learning.
Now while this was going on in the Hamilton Building, across the plaza in the HLB Building Juliette Aristides was doing her 2-day workshop which was running at the same time. My friend Lexi was the monitor form that workshop and she sent me the two photos of the demos Aristides was working on. I wish I could have taken booth but I'm sure she will come back. Friday evening before the workshop Aristidies she gave a talk and slide show about her work and took questions after wards from the crowd.
Lexi and Will looking at art before Aristides' talk.
Peter van Dyck and his wife carolyn Pyfrom talk with Aristides after her talk.
Here are two of her demos from the workshop.
So it was a busy, a bit hectic and exhausting week as well as my Birthday--I just turned 50 today--but age isn't anything but a number!

1 comment:

aisha said...

I wanted to thank you for this great post!! I enjoyed every little bit of it, I have you bookmarked and waiting for all the new stuff you post.
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