Exhibition season – back to New Zealand for the summer…

Back home for Christmas and the New Zealand summer …pauanui beach

Every January I exhibit my new work at my NZ studio in Pauanui, a favorite summer holiday destination for Kiwis and visitors from overseas.. this is a great time for me and I get to sell direct to the art loving public before my new work goes into the commercial galleries and Art shops. My studio is open until the 20th of January. I will be returing to Bali on the 24th Jan !

open studio exh


We also hold a group New years exhibition at the shopping centre for 2 days with artists coming from all around the North Island, attracting lots of people and great sales again this year…


pauanui art expo

Relocated outdoors…

The season is definitely changing now – It’s becoming too hot to work inside – so I’m now working out on the deck.
My new studio space is cool and breezy !
With only about 6 week now until I return with my work to show in New Zealand, I’m working flat out to be ready in time.
Whoop whoop – after a fairly easy pace for most of 2012,  I’m finally getting fired up – matching the climate hmmmm…


An ending and a new beginning – life in Studio Kayu Manis

The end of one painting cycle

This latest diptych is inspired by a  Haiku written by the commissioner.  I have focused on the feet of both horse and rider – the horses galloping along in a powerful stride and the rider, with his feelings of being able to fly, literally leaves the ground.

This was the last in a series of commissions I have been working on since the beginning of  this year.
My Studio is now quiet and strangely empty…

…The beginning of a new cycle

Now that I have come to the end of the commissions I have only 6 months to paint a series of works to exhibit in New Zealand in January. So its back to work for me and time to think about what I want to focus on for the next series.

I have been to my frame maker this morning and placed an order for my new frames… a beginning !

Now I need to think about what I intend to paint… I was explaining to my friend,  yesterday, that a new idea, as it begins to form, is like waking in the morning and trying to recollect the dream you were just having… its kinda just beyond reach but you still  ” feel”  its presence.  During this time I prepare my canvas’s … stretching ,  priming and underpainting … this is what I call the meditative stage. The ideas and feeling somehow come together and then a burst of creative power erupts…

Painting progression – New work

This is my latest work, 2 large triangles which sit together to form a larger triangle. There is a Yin / Yang theme, represented by colour, daylight shows the  full colour spectrum  and moonlight is monochrome … monochrome spaces, left hand background, top right hand flower and pot, balanced with full colour spaces. Banana leaf – male, bamboo – female.  Yin is receptive – the bowls while yang is creative which is represented by the  bird. I was also asked to include words from a poem about a warm coat and a feast. The coat is obvious and the bowls, of course, represent food. Although the ‘warm coat’ would normally indicate a cold climate,  there is a very obvious tropical feel – since I am in Bali !

Below you can follow the progress of the work from a black canvas to its colourful completion.

Chinese checkers

I have fond memories of the old Chinese checkers board game that we used to play with as kids when visiting my Grandparents. Recently I have been watching the TV series ” How I met your mother” and I keep noticing the old Chinese Checkers board used as art on the wall of Marshall and Ted’s apartment in the show. Well that’s cool, I have been thinking, so I looked online to see if I could pick up a vintage set.
My Google search led me to these images of Chinese propaganda posters. The Artists of that time were put to work making these delightful posters and some of them are really beautifully painted. I especially like to see how the style has changed from the earlier women’s cosmetics posters  to early communist posters and then the more later posters. I think the art work is quite wonderful.
My parents traveled as tourists to China when I was quite young and they bought me back one of these posters. I wish I still had it, I know I loved it at the time, but being a traveler, pretty much all of my childhood stuff has vanished along the way.
I have never been to China, but its most definitely on my wish list, I’ve been attracted to all things China for most of my life, even now I keep stumbling on things with a Chinese theme. So… today I share some of these found goodies…
Oh, btw, I don’t have a TV, I prefer to watch movies and DVD box sets of my choice on my Laptop.  ‘How I met your mother’  isn’t exactly my best choice and not much of an indication of my taste in viewing, but I picked up seasons 1 and 2 ’cause Id seen everything else in the store…

Painting progression – Wolf and I

I have just finished a commission piece and have photographed it at the different stages of completion.
You will notice the changes I make along the way and how much time I spend in the planning stages. Please excuse the poor photography.  I find paintings very hard to photograph, its hard to get the colours right and I get a lot of glare off the paint.

The painting is based on a Haiku written by the client who commissioned it. The Haiku, and consequently the painting,  is inspired by Mongolia where he, the client,  lived for several years.
Keep in mind that I am living in hot, steamy, tropical Bali and had to get into the feeling of Wolfs and snow … It was quite a challenge.

The Haiku
Wolf and I gaze, Dreading
winters ice blows cold, biting
meager sun, no warmth

The Painting
Wolf and I
Acrylic on canvas
1500 x 1000