Angry Tundra: see first posting March 2008

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Summer exhibition and new ideas

And yet an other exhibition. Same place as last year, in the old Barabara church in Culemborg. Lovely place to hang a large painting, but for me again with mixed feelings. My work is about 4 billion years of evolution and the rate at which we are destroying it. I know that many modern christians accept the idea of evolution, more or less. But my feeling is that I am showing sacriligeous images in somebody's house of God. Just have a look at the contrast:
At the moment I'm working on a new set of paintings. From reactions of other artists (in particular) I get the idea my message is not coming across, or is maybe the message is not personal enough. I'm not sure if I really understand my critics or if I should listen to their well meant advice. If you as a follower of my blog would like to contribute to the discussion: be my guest and comment (or send me an e-mail if you prefer). I'm going to try a new approach anyway. The central theme for my next paintings will be the concept of the ecological (or carbon) footprint. Of course Google Earth will still be part of it.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Exhibition at Kobalt

Long time no blog... I'm afraid work, holidays, exhibitions and other distractions have kept me from it. In this first september post some images from the exhibition at Kobalt Gallery in Culemborg. It's situated in what used to be the train station's restaurant. It was a duo show with friend and painter Henk van den Gronde with ceramics from his wife Yvonne.

I Don't like posing for pictures, but here's me with my latest 2 paintings:

Monday, June 1, 2009

No More Tigers and The Tiger Returns

oil on linnen 120 X 140 cm

This (not so good) photo of my latest painting is again all about deforestation. During my Google earth explorations of Malaysia I was triggered by a World Wildlife Fund location where research was carried out to see if tigers come back to a sustainably logged piece of forest. The conclusion seems to be that they do. Tigers form the top of the ecological pyramid in these parts, if they don't return you can be shure that the logging is'nt all that sustainable after all. This was good news and I wanted to paint it. However, sustainable logging doesnt look all that spectacular from above. I needed to offset it against the non sustainable kind of logging. There's plenty of that to be found in Malaysia. It looks like the painting below. Large pieces of land are stripped of valuable timber, burnt and bulldozered it in pretty paterns (probable following contours in the land). All ready to plant oil palm trees to supplement our hunger for fuel.

oil on linnen 120 X 140 cm

Exhibition at Kobalt

Gallery Kobalt is situated in the old train station. My friend/ painter Henk van den Gronde and I were there two weeks ago for the opening of an other friend of ours: Fons van der Mullen (see the link to the gallery for his current exhibition) . We thought it might be a good idea to have an exhibition together at Kobalt sometime and asked the owners if they thought so too. A few days later they called us: they needed a stand in for the coming month, were we able to get our stuff togeteher at short notice? Off course we could! So, if you're anywhere near Culemborg , Netherlands, drop by. The opening is on Sunday the 14th of June at 15.00 hours. Easy to find, especially if you come by train. The show will be running till Friday the 10th of July. 

Monday, May 11, 2009

The secrets of the trade: painting techniques

Well, it's been some time since my last post, and my faithfull blog readers (is there a better word? Blogee? Blogower?) are probably wondering if I have given up. 
Dont dispair! I will not give in to the pressures of every day life, Google Earth Art will prevail! 
(excuse my sense of humour)
I've had a bit of a time out, focussing - among other things - on getting myself married a second time round. I'm working on a new series of two, maybe three paintings of 1,20 X 1,40 meters, again with deforestation as a prime subject. I expect the first one to be finished in two or three weeks from now. 
In the mean time I've decided to show you some of the techniques I use in my paintings. I don't pretend do do anything technically innovative. Check outAquil Copier if you're interested in innovative painting in conjunction with satellite art! 
When I started painting Van Gogh was my prime example. I painted in quick strokes of thick complementary colours. Because I started out with acrillic paints my paintings tended to have this plastic like sheen which I did'nt like much. I have been very lucky to paint (8 years now) with a group of painters more experienced than me. Some of them are art teachers and the last thing they want to do is teach, they're there to paint! But you can learn a lot from just watching. So I learned to use medium and use more transparent pigments. This results in more depth of colour and gives the 
painting a more lively feel. Most of my friends paint in oils. Oils are slower, it takes a lot longer to finish an oil painting. But I loved the look and feel of the paint, and once I tried oils I was hooked. In the mean time I gradually traded the van Gogh like (impasto) technique for one using many more or less transparent layers. In the detail above from "Angry Tundra"(see first post) you can see the use of very thin layers, both opaque (e.g. the napels yellow mixed with zink white) and transparent (e.g. the indian yellow and sapgreen) over darker patches of prussian blue. The snow patch is done in a thick white paint with a tiny amount of magenta mixed wet on the canvas with blues (both prussian and cobalt I think).  
My friends tell me I have had a characteristic brushstroke from the start. Despite all the changes in techniques over the years my work is (aparrently) still instantly recognisable as mine. It's like a signature; the first one you made when you were 8 or 10 years old is completely different from the one you make when you're 50 (or whatever), and yet often recognisable as coming from the same unique person. Just to give you an idea: here's a small landscape I made 14 years ago in the Provence. Can you see its the same artist? 
I would'nt paint like this now, but it's nothing to be ashamed of either, is it?

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Lonely at the top

oil on canvas 100 * 120 cm

This must be one of the most remote places on earth, somewhere deep in the Russian Tundra (again). It's not a a spectacular mountain. Like most of the thousands of similar hills in the neigbourhood it's capped with cold granite rocks. I wouldn't be surprised if no human being has ever bothered to climb this particular hill, in fact I doubt if anyone has ever even taken note of it. But it's an amazing piece of earth history, thrust up as a mountain range I don't know how long ago, worn down by wind, rain, ice and snow. Lots of snow by the looks of it: this place was under the ice cap probably not so long ago (maybe 10.000 years). Anyway, I discovered this hill using Google Earth, and untill some-one challanges my claim, I claim it as MINE! Well at least in a virtual sense. The Earth of course doens't belong to any one except maybe life in general. So, I claim it in the name of LIFE IN GENERAL (and me in particular). 

Opening in Budapest

A wonderfull exhibition with 19 other Dutch artists in Budapest. It's still on for another week if you want to see it! The opening was great. The Opera Gallery is (as you might expect) around the corner from the grand old Budapest Opera House, in a stately 19th century mansion (not sure about the age). Opened by the cultural attache to the Dutch embassy, accomanied by live opera and jazz it was all a good opening should be. Met some interesting people (most of the artists made the trip over) and used a couple of days before and after to explore Budapest with my beloved. 
Check this link for the photo's

Monday, March 9, 2009

Brochure for exhibition in Budapest

The brochure for the exhibition I'm involved in at the Opera Gallery in Budapest, Hungary is published. Here's the link

Monday, February 16, 2009

Exhibition in Budapest, Hungary

Last week I gave a positive reply to an invitation for a group exhibition of Dutch artists at the Opera Gallery in the cente of Budapest, Hungary. It will be held between the 14 th andf 28th of March. So... if you're anywhere nearby, drop in to have a look! It's quite a large gallery around the corner from the old Opera house. Contact information is all on their lovely site:

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Patty van Sprang

Patty van Sprang is another satellite artist. She wrote a comment on my post about Aquil Copier. She lives in Queensland Australia, but was born in Surinam, and lived in the Netherlands for quite afew years as well. Should I claim that again a new art form has Dutch origins? No off course not. This is going to be a true planet wide movement! I would dare to draw the conclusion that it is our love and concern for our planet, that serves as our main source of inspiration. Am I right? 
This is where you can find Patty's blog:

Spider impact crator

oil on canvas 100 X 120 cm
Flying over the North Western Australian dessert you might come across this huge meteorite impact crator.It's about 13 km across. There's hundreds of these meteor crators all over the panet. This is certainly not the biggest, I just liked the shape. Of course in all of (human) history there's never been an impact this size. It makes me wonder what would happen if a chunk of space rock this size would hit us.... A nice subject to discuss on my GE philosophy site (havent got round to it yet).

Saturday, January 24, 2009

WAD Next?

oil on canvas 100 x 100 cm
And yet another one in the series about this bit of wilderness close to home. In this case it's another close up of the island of Schiermonikoog. I can't claim any deep philosophical insight behind this painting (so much for my new blog- see previous post). I was drawn to the composition, the almost alien form. An open invitation to make my own interpretation. I havent found out yet what those round objects are. I suspect they are thorny bushes which have grown out in a circle over the years, gathering sand into small circular dunes. But that's just a guess.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Google Earth Philosophy

I've been wanting to add a page to my blog where I can delve into DEEPER THOUGHTS about Google, Earth, Art, Science, Polititics, religion, you name it. I could'nt find an easy way to add such a page to this blog, so....... I started a new blog which will be linked all over the place to this blog. It's called:
Google Earth Philosophy
Check the link:

At this time there's no posts, but soon there will be! I hope other authors will join me. Let me know if you're interested.