Thursday, November 17, 2011

From Paris to the Poitou-Charentes to Watch Hill (Rhode Island): A Sense of Place

I just saw the film "My Best Friend" (in France, it is "Mon Meilleur Ami"), made in 2006. It is a well-written, sweet comedy about a successful (but rather cut-throat) art and antiques dealer who is challenged by his colleagues to produce a "real" best friend.  Like Woody Allen's "Midnight in Paris," this film has moments where the city is almost a character. Check out this perfect restaurant:

This still shows the actor Daniel Auteuil, pondering his (character's) friend-less state. And, later, the cinematography gives us a bridge over the Seine with the wonderful view and, here, amazing clouds:

And, at some point, alas, the movie ends.  I think that one of the reasons I paint landscapes, or place my odalisques into new landscapes, is to deal with this remembering, longing, the beginnings and endings of being in a "place."  I have been working on a painting that began as a muddy triptych, moved to an homage to Joan Mitchell, and now is, perhaps, the newest odalisque work. I have added the clouds and winds from a tempete, a huge storm that we lived through in December 1999 in the Poitou-Charentes:

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