I first saw Venice at night. It was a chilly November eve and the city was shrouded in a silent, insulating fog. Sounds of water lapping on the canal walls echoed a melancholy that accompanies a late autumn mood in Italy. The summer sun had gone and with it the hoards of tourists; it seemed as if the life of the city was turning inward. Saint Mark’s square was empty save for the last pigeons working overtime, and in the distance someone was playing violin. Continue reading “Reflections of Venice 2016”
I’ve painted outdoors and I’ve painted indoors… on location and in studios all over the world. People often ask me: Which do I prefer? Is one more authentic? Is the other easier? Over the years I’m thinking it is all up to the individual, what gets you stoked as a painter, what inspires your process.
I suppose that when it comes to art studios, I’ve been fortunate enough to have worked in some amazing spaces in the world. Some were corners in a room, others covered patios, basements, cantinas, spare rooms, garages and shared spaces with other artists. Some spaces I have lived and slept in, some had great surf and snowboarding right outside the door. Some studios have been the backdrop for tea parties, holiday parties, and art shows…others transformed into movie sets for numerous film projects. From the ancient olive mill in Tuscany to the the old Del Monte Cannery in San Francisco, all these spaces impart their energy into my work and inspire in their own unique ways.
In this, my 30th year as a professional artist, I’m looking back at those places with many fond recollections. The hundreds if not thousands (!) of paintings I have created over those years!
This last weekend I had the honour of exhibiting my work at Lahaina’s 39th Anniversary Show. Along with seven other master artists, we celebrated with some of Lahaina Galleries’ patrons and collectors at a private unveiling the evening before.
It has been a wet autumn here in Tuscany, and that following a very wet summer. Italy has been inundated by November’s storms adding to the heaviness of an already disastrous olive harvest. Makes for a slightly maudlin mood for the locals. Rainy weather means more time for me in the studio, happily working away… of course, on my newest water paintings. Continue reading “Autumn Reflections from a Tuscan Studio”
Each year Hollister Ranch stages a Hoedown to benefit a different aspect of their community. It’s one of my favourite events of the year – the setting; one of the most magical coastlines in North America. This year’s theme was environmental sustainability, something The Ranch has been at forefront of for many years. The residents are proud stewards of the land, balancing ecological preservation with agriculture and residential development.
I’ve been fortunate enough to be painting The Ranch for years and always marvel at the changing light and coloring of the seasons. A sacred place indeed, it’s no wonder the Chumash flourished here for millennia.
Though not open to the general public, residents and their guests turn out in large numbers to support the Hoedown organised by more than 50 volunteers.
This year fifty percent of the proceeds from the Art Sale benefited the Hollister Ranch Fire Department.
The Ranch is 14,400 acres of grazing lands, beach bluffs, and open meadows backing up to remote mountains and valleys north of Santa Barbara, and is home to some of the best surf breaks in the world. For many years the surf was only accessible by boat… surfing at the Ranch became the stuff of myth and legend….
For Renzo it’s a chance to run free on the beach, cool off in the ocean and then kick back on a hay bale and listen to some great music…
Hollister Ranch resident Jackson Browne once again headlined the concert line-up this year which always features a surprise guest…
This year the crowd was treated to a ninety minute set by surprise guest Jeff Bridges performing songs and embracing his character from Crazy Heart.
I’m honoured to be included in the Hoedown – it’s my opportunity to give something back to this special part of California and the people who live there.
Photos by John Charles Jopson
Come to my next exhibition“No Bad Paintings, No Bad Waves” in Laguna Beach, August 25, 2012. Mickey Muñoz will be signing his new Patagonia-published book “No Bad Waves: Talking Story with Mickey Muñoz” and showing some of his unique photographs, and we’ll be celebrating his 75th birthday!
Summer has at long last come to the Southern California Coast and these last few evenings have been gorgeous enough to tempt me back into the water. In anticipation of my upcoming exhibition at Gallery McCollum, No Bad Paintings, No Bad Waves, where Mickey Muñoz will be signing his new book, we had the pleasure of a sunset surf together at Doheny.
I suppose you could say Mickey has been my “surf mentor” over the years… if you equate “surf” = “life”. Since our first surf session at his beloved Middles in 1984, I have shared many many waves with Mickey – since long before he became my brother-in-law – and looked to him as a role model in how to live Life to the fullest degree.
My Precious Michel Junod Patagonia board has been my favorite for over 16 years…. and a pre-surf waxing up still one of my Life’s greatest pleasures….
Checking the surf… and check out this board: Mickey shapes all his stand-up paddle boards. Fabulous.
Mickey will be signing his book, “No Bad Waves: Talking Story with MickeyMuñoz” from 3:00PM on, and he’ll be showing some of his unique photographs as well. It will be a very rare opportunity to buy an original photograph by Mickey Muñoz – and celebrate his 75th birthday!
Books will be available for purchase at the gallery. You can also pre-buy the book at your local book shop, from Patagonia, or at this link on Amazon.com.