Nov 2019 – Inspired by a trip to Perugia Italy, after visiting the National Gallery I wanted to create icons that explored decay and ageing. Using watercolour, acrylic, gold leaf and pen, these interpretations of the religious theme of Madonna and child are experimental. Continuing with my theme using collage, I added Japanese paper as part of the patterned surface, allowing it to appear and disappear as if worn away.
While painting on the bank of Lake Kawaguchiko, sat in the spring sunshine, with the most amazing view of Mt Fuji directly one front of us, it seeded the beginning of an idea of using collage as well a drawing and painting in my art work.
Back in the studio in Tokyo we had time to explore our previous days paintings of Mt Fuji and had time to develop them Further. We did this with collage made from Japanese paper, adverts, receipts m magazines anything we had to hand.
July 2019 – I have developed this idea and used it extensively in my new work. The Geisha Dreams work was a combination of my love of the Kimono, fashion illustration and collage. The paper for the collage came from Recycling any paper we collected on our trip. The subject matter, the ideas are pure fantasy.
We have hosted two painting holidays in Japan. Although I have visited Japan many years ago I didn’t visit with the eyes of a painter. This time I went to paint and teach painting. This opened my eyes to the dramatic beauty of their cities and landscapes. We visited Museums , galleries, shrines, temples, and several iconic places my favourite being Mt Fuji.
We visited the National museum in Tokyo, this had such a beautiful collection of historical artefacts. Scrolls, screens, paintings, Costner, pottery. My first visit was on the day I landed in Japan, I was buzzing full of excitement for the trip, but also exhausted. I didn’t I would absorb much, but I did. That trip has been very influential on the direction my work took.