On the 24th May, a special day for me, was the Vytlacil Open Studio event. Although I have attended many group openings, this was the first where I was on my own, responsible for the look of the whole thing and looking after my guests. (Although, of course, the other residents were also hosting their open studios. I will post about them some time soon).
For many reasons I had decided to work small during the residency - ranging in size from 10x10cm to 25x50cm. My subject matter was what I had encountered since coming to New York - especially the people in Central Park, where I had spent a fair bit of time, walking from the 57th St studios of the Art Student's League to the museums on the Upper East Side.
The following is my statement for the night - "Coming to New York from Glasgow has been quite a voyage, forcing me to reconsider attitudes and decisions as well as illuminating many possibilities. My first week was spent at Peter Cox’s workshop at the Art Students League 57th building in the mornings and strolling round the museums in the afternoons. Another place I spent a lot of time was in Central Park. Many of the people I saw there became the basis of my paintings shown here today. The museums (and the sunshine) led me to a realisation of how crucial colour can be in loving a painting and has encouraged me to be more expressionistic. Since then I have attended life drawing here regularly and have benefitted from critiques. Once back home my work is likely to experiment more with colour and composition – the journey has only just begun!"
The reward of night was the looks on folks faces - an entirely unfakeable look - and the many great conversations I had. Maybe I might even do it all again, sometime!