Europe: from balcony, bus window and roadside

That’s the title for my next outing at Mockingbird Lounge, Glenelg (in Adelaide). I have a hallway space – hanging  tomorrow. Today I will share with you my paintings inspired by Rome, or at least by my photographs of Rome.

Philippa Robert, Adelaide South Australia
Centuries apart, Rome

Philippa Robert, Adelaide South Australia
Piazza del Popolo, Rome

Philippa Robert, Adelaide South Australia

The pines of Rome

Philippa Robert, Adelaide South Australia

Colours of Rome

What a taming effect working from photographs has! It is difficult to ignore the camera’s “truth” in favour of the imaginative inner eye. Working outdoors opens up so many more possibilities – nuances of colour, changing light, the excitement of fleeting visions. The sheer pressure of being out there, the time limit, the silent battles all add something to the dynamics of painting. That’s what got me thinking about the power of the camera’s image.

Today when I gathered all my recent European works to glaze and put in their frames, some them cried out for more attention. They needed strengthening a bit tonally or colour-wise – just a bit more punch.  I had most trouble with “Colours of Rome” (above) which was the first one I started, almost the day after our return. I was super-keen to work in parallel with my colleagues in Rome, to reduce the disappointment somehow. This one still feels like a picture, Oh well.

There they are. From the ashes of our visit to Rome.

I have to say that Rome in the daylight is another place altogether! For me it is good to see something positive emerge from our brief non-stay. I don’t think there is any pain visible. Do you?

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11 thoughts on “Europe: from balcony, bus window and roadside

  1. I don’t see pain. And I actually love how they all share the same feel of a snapshot – taken from the bus. And I don’t mean that in the sense that they look obviously painted from photos, it’s more that I find it’s a charming theme, however unintended. They are very obviously a unit.

  2. Philippa, in ‘another life’ I was a classical music buff. Have you by any chance ever heard of the Italian composer Ottorino Respighi? He wrote a symphonic trilogy, one piece is “Pines of Rome”. I can’t believe how much I can hear that score in my head when I look at these paintings, esp. your pine trees’ piece. It is a tumultuous piece of music – and after hearing of your experience(s) in Rome, I can’t help but associate. These pieces, esp. your pine trees do not look to me like they were NOT done from life. They are lovely, and I wish I could be at your show w/ you to see them in-person. Congrats!!!

    1. Hi Patricia, yes I have heard of Respighi although I wouldn’t have been able to spell his name! I will track down that piece of music – thanks for the pointer. Glad you are fooled by the paintings!! Philippa

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