Drawing Class. Session 2. Homework – still life with guitar

October 28, 2011

Next week’s class is Still Life and I inwardly baulk at the prospect of a jug and two lemons, or the equivalent. I came across a sentence in Cathy Johnson’s First Steps Series: Sketching and Drawing where she advocated non-traditional objects in still life setups.

A foreshortened guitar, in a somewhat precarious position (this guitar will be have to be moved immediately before it gets damaged – and the setup will disappear) , reminded me of the violin in Artemisia Gentileschi’s painting of a woman tuning a lute. I am privately reeling from the links between the nightingale metaphor in the French 16th centuary chanson Je suis desheritee and the subject matter of Richard Mills’ early 21st century opera The Love of the Nightingale, currently running at the Sydney Opera House; in a similar way, the 20th century literature on the subject of Artemisia links us with the work of the 17th century painter.

I also caught some snatches of the film The Pearl Ear-ring last week, a fiction spun around the Vermeer painting.  Towards the end I highlighted the upholstery roses to echo the idea of a guitar ‘rose’. If this sketch has a soundtrack, it must be Il somno profondo from Vivaldi’s Juditha Triumphans, Vedro con il mio diletto from Vivaldi’s Giustino (as sung by Sonia Prina, contrasted with Philippe Jaroussky) or J.C.Bach’s, Ach das ich Wassers gnug hatte and Buxtehude’s Laudate pueri – all of which I have to watch on YouTube at least once daily at the moment otherwise I go crazy.

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