A Tribute to Joan Mirro Ferra
Acrylic on Canvas – 84 x 40″ (213 x 102cm)
(Born: April 20, 1893, Barcelona, Spain Died: December 25, 1983, Palma, Spain)

Joan Miró i Ferrà was a Spanish painter, sculptor, and ceramicist born in Barcelona. Joan Miró was a Catalan painter who combined abstract art with Surrealist fantasy. His mature style evolved from the tension between his fanciful poetic impulse and his vision of the harshness of modern life. He worked extensively in lithography and produced numerous murals, tapestries, and sculptures for public spaces. A museum dedicated to his work, the Fundació Joan Miró, was established in his native city of Barcelona in 1975, and another, the Fundació Pilar i Joan Miró, was established in his adoptive city of Palma de Mallorca in 1981. Wikipedia  The Museum of Modern Art, The Art Institute of Chicago   Periods: Surrealism, Fauvism, Cubism, Abstract expressionism

“I found Miro’s work different from the other painters at the time, where some of his works took on a more child-like surrealistic fantasy –original, very modern and colourful–extraordinary.”

“Since 1972 (yearly) I have been living and painting in Sitges (20 minutes from Barcelona). Miro, Dali, Picasso are the three artists that predominate the museums in Barcelona — each with their own individual museums. Miro–The Fundació Joan Miró is a museum of modern art honoring Joan Miró located on the hill called Montjuïc in Barcelona, Catalonia. Picasso–The Museu Picasso, located in Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain, houses one of the most extensive collections of artworks by the 20th-century Spanish artist Pablo Picasso. The Dalí Theater Museum is the most important museum dedicated to the Catalan surrealist artist Salvador Dalí. Located in his hometown of Figueres,(a couple of hours from Barcelona and 25 minutes from Cadaques, my other favourite studio in Cataluna).

When living in Cataluna you are emerged into the culture, the language and the arts– the topic of conversation is often about these three artists as they lived there, went to school there, and painted there. Barcelona has always attracted art historians, art enthusiasts, tourists, from all over the world to learn and view some of the world’s most famous artists and the famous architect Gaudi — La Sagrada Familia — miraculous. We passed this cathedral throughout the years as we have life-long friends that live just down the street from this cathedral. It is awe-inspiring.




A Tribute to Gustav Klimt

Acrylic on Canvas – 84 x 40″ (213 x 102 cm)
(July 14, 1862 – February 6, 1918)

Gustav Klimt was an Austrian symbolist painter and one of the most prominent members of the Vienna Secession movement.

Austrian artist Gustav Klimt is one of the most celebrated Symbolist artists. During his successful career, he cultivated a portfolio comprising academic paintings, life drawings, and even decorative art objects. Still, he is most well-known for the collection of glistening, gilded works he produced during his Golden Phase.  Klimt co-founded the Secessionist Movement in 1897. Rejecting Vienna’s traditionally conservative art scene, Klimt and other Secessionists gave Vienna’s contemporary artists a platform to share their work. This liberating movement inspired and allowed Klimt to experiment with his art and develop a Symbolist style inspired by the Art Nouveau and Arts and crafts movements. .

Gustav Klimt is best known for his opulently gilded art nouveau portraits of women that epitomize fin-de-siècle Vienna. His Symbolist pastiches of pale nudes, allegorical gardens and erotic content served as the basis for many American psychedelic poster designs in the 1960s. Early in his career, Klimt was supported generously by the Viennese community, and received several commissions for murals in theaters and the Museum Kunsthistorisches. Early narrative paintings depicted heavy subjects such as anxiety, doubt, sexuality, and death, but in later years, he turned toward landscape painting, exploring light and abstract patterns of nature. His most famous paintings are The Kiss (1907) and Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer (1907), which sold for a record auction price of more than 100 million dollars in 2006.

“The Kiss” is the final painting of Klimt’s Gold Period, during which he incorporated gold leaf into his works. This practice reflects the strong influence of the gold-detailed religious art of the Middle Ages as well as the sacred works created by artists of the Byzantine Empire.This luminous period lasted about a decade, yet it has come to characterize Klimt’s style and has resulted in some of modern arts most well-known and valuable paintings.

“The central focus is on Klimt, I chose a black and white photograph of him from the archives, dated 1902. I decided on this study as he has the allure of an artist, with a profound expression and a touch of craziness which depicts the inner passion which artists draw on to paint wonderful artwork. It also shows a very sensitive side, as I noted with his black and white cat, he seems to adore this big black and white cat which shows up in many of his personal photos. In 2016 I was exhibiting at an international exhibition in Vienna at the MOYA, Museum of Young Art, the Palais Schonborn, in the heart of Vienna and of course if you are in Vienna you must go to Klimt’s museum.

I was fortunate to see many of Klimt’s works at the Osterreichische Galerie Belvedere Museum. Klimt’s glistening “Golden Phase” was impressive and the gold leaf which he used during this period created a third dimension in the texture and the depth of the design—quite spell-binding, the intensity, the allure of gold is often a feature that I like to present in my paintings. The depth in his works was due to the intricate design which left one following the brush work into the grooves and the gold highlights and texture.

It was important for me to view Klimt’s last and most famous painting of this period THE KISS (Der Kuss) is considered a masterpiece of Vienna Secession (local variation of Art Nouveau) and Klimt’s most popular work. It was 72 x 72 inches — it reached out to you, it was impressive and beautifully executed”.



A Tribute to Jackson Pollock

Acrylic on Canvas – 84 x 40″ (213 x 102 cm)
(January 28, 1912 – August 11, 1956)

“The painting has a life of its own. I try to let it come through” – Jackson Pollock

He was an influential American painter, and the leading force behind the abstract expressionist movement in the art world. During his lifetime, Pollock enjoyed considerable fame and notoriety. Jackson Pollock’s greatness lies in developing one of the most radical abstract styles in the history of modern art, detaching line from color, redefining the categories of drawing and painting, and finding new means to describe pictorial space.

Jackson Pollock was born in Cody, Wyoming in 1912. His father, LeRoy Pollock was a farmer and later a land surveyor for the government. Jackson Pollock grew up in Arizona and Chico, California.

To this day Jackson Pollock is known as a leader in the most important 20th century American art movements. The risks and the creative approaches he took, led future artists to create with passion, as opposed to trying to follow set boundaries or guidelines.


“All artists have been influenced by Pollock.  It was his spontaneity action art with no particular subject that I found compelling.  A dynamic combination of line and colour and paint dripped and spread over a large canvas — spontaneous and fast gives you a feeling that the artist was in a passionate rage to complete the painting.  His work was an important contribution in the 20th century, of styles, representing full contact painting.  I put his work in the top ten of my favourite artists, because of his originality and the freedom of his expression.

A Tribute to Leonardo Da Vinci

The Battle of Anghiari, Acrylic on Canvas – 84 x 40″ (213 x 102 cm)
(Born: April 15, 1452, Anchiano, Italy Died: May 2, 1519, Château du Clos Lucé, Amboise, France)

Leonardo da Vinci was a Renaissance artist and engineer, known for paintings like “The Last Supper” and “Mona Lisa,” and for inventions like a flying machine. He was a Renaissance painter, sculptor, architect, inventor, military engineer and draftsman — the epitome of a true Renaissance man. Gifted with a curious mind and a brilliant intellect, da Vinci studied the laws of science and nature, which greatly informed his work. His drawings, paintings and other works have influenced countless artists and engineers over the centuries.

The Battle of Anghiari is a lost painting by Leonardo da Vinci at times referred to as, “The Lost Leonardo”, which some commentators believe to be still hidden beneath later frescoes in the Hall of Five Hundred (Salone dei Cinquecento) in the Palazzo Vecchio, Florence. Its central scene depicted three men riding raging war-horses engaged in a battle for possession of a standard. Sometime around October 1503, Leonardo was commissioned to paint the mural of The Battle of Anghiari, for the Sala del Gran Consiglio, the recently rebuilt Great Council Hall of the Palazzo Vecchio in Florence, during the first years of the city’s republican government.

“The first time I saw an original work of art by Leonardo da Vinci was a field trip to London with my first Art School from Liverpool–Laird School of Art–1960 (just before I went onto Liverpool College of Art).

It was called the Leonardo Cartoon and it was only just acquired at the National Gallery in London in 1960–The Virgin and Child with Saint Anne and Saint John the Baptist, sometimes called The Burlington House Cartoon, is a drawing by Leonardo da Vinci. The drawing is in charcoal and black and white chalk, on eight sheets of paper glued together. It is now back in Italy.

As it was just acquired in London it was important for our Art School to take this special field trip to view the original–The Leonardo Cartoon. We studied Leonardo in my life study, for life drawings– we had to study the limbs of the body to learn how to do three dimensional drawing. Obviously, he was the master of drawing detail and the human body. I particularly liked his drawings in the red pencil. As there is such an enigma behind The Lost Painting, The Battle of Anghiari it was more intriguing to paint it–it arouses one’s curiosity, as in the Mona Lisa, always captivating, with an air of mystery.”



A Tribute to Kandinsky

Acrylic on Canvas – 84 x 40″ (213 x 102 cm)
(May 13, 1882, Argenteuil, France — August 31, 1963, Paris, France)

“I liked Kandinsky’s clean dimensional drawings, very geometrical, architectural, with precise detail, and the balance of the composition and the line work is very important–he comes across as a perfectionist, not only in his work, but in his appearance and his success in everything he attempted. It was apparent that he enjoyed the challenges of discovery, invention and innovation”.

Georges Braque was a major 20th-century French painter, collagist, draughtsman, printmaker and sculptor. His most important contributions to the history of art were in his alliance with Fauvism from 1905, and the role he played in the development of Cubism.Periods: Cubism, Synthetic cubism, Expressionism. Wikipedia

THE FIRST ERA OF CUBISM was a highly influential visual arts style of the 20th century that was created principally by the painters Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque in Paris between 1907 and 1914.

Both artists’ works were so similar that some of the works are indistinguishable. Because Braque and Picasso’s works were extraordinarily similar, it was hard to credit one artist with the creation of the Cubism movement. Picasso first created “Demoiselles,” which had an initial touch of Cubism. However, one of Picasso’s quotes: “Good artists copy, but Great artists steal” — it was often said by other artists at the time, hide your works when Picasso drops by, they feared him taking their ideas, and doing it better.



A Tribute to George Braque

Acrylic on Canvas – 84 x 40″ (213 x 102 cm)
(January 23, 1832, Paris, France — April 30, 1883, Paris, France)

“I have introduced Braque’s image in a stylized cubistic style, similar to his style of cubism. The backdrop continues as an example of his usage of vertical and horizontal structure and sharp angles. During the wartime period, the work he put together would change in order to represent the somber, dark period the world was going through and these are the colours I have used here. After reading about Picasso and hearing about the other artists that would not let him in their studios, knowing he would steal their ideas, I imagine Braque as being the inventor of Cubism as I can’t imagine Braque copying Picasso.”



A Tribute to Edouard Manet

Acrylic on Canvas
(January 23, 1832, Paris, France — April 30, 1883, Paris, France)

Édouard Manet was a French modernist painter. He was one of the first 19th-century artists to paint modern life, and a pivotal figure in the transition from Realism to Impressionism. Wikipedia The Luncheon in the Studio 1868 Edouard Manet, oil on canvas, depicted people, Leon Leenhoff Suzanne Manet, Edouard Manet, Jose-Auguste Rousselin (118 cm–46.4in) Width (l53.9cm–60.5in) The Metropolitan Museum of Art, National Gallery of Art, Periods: Impressionism, Realism, Modern Art, Modernism

“In 1970 we decided to go to Acapulco for six months, we had an old Zephyr, one mechanic said it would never make it past Seattle, and another friend, Tom, who owned a garage said the old Zephyr always gets you there.  Well, there were some problems on the way, fan belt went, a few little things, but after a long arduous trip we arrived in the heat of the day, hot and humid, like a tropical jungle, to one of Mexico’s oldest beach resorts and a port since the early colonial period of Mexico’s history. We rented a great bungalow by the beach and there I painted for six months. I wanted to challenge myself by doing a miniature painting  of Manet’s Luncheon in the Studio 1868, one of my favourite realist painters. This painting is now in the Ygartua  Family Collection.”

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