OBJECT OF DESIRE
Paintings by Ruth Law
Opening: Sunday 15 October 3.00 – 5.00pm
11 – 23 October 2017
The Palm House
Royal Botanic Garden, Sydney
Mrs Macquaries Road, (Woolloomooloo Gate)
Open daily 10.00am – 4.00pm
Telephone: 0405 665 496
Inspiration for my latest Exhibition: “Object of Desire” 2017
In early March this year, I had the good fortune of going to Cabrieres-d’Avignon, Provence-Alpes, a 300 year old village in the South of France. Good fortune, not just because of where it was, but because of when it was – Spring. The colours and the soft light of the French countryside brought back memories of paintings I had seen and loved by French and other European impressionists.
Whilst there, I came across an olive grove near Chemin des Fileuses, an ancient walking path. There was a stone wall and a small wooden bench, shaded from the sun by masses of olive leaves. It was a place of such serenity and total calm, a sanctuary, that I returned three more times, sat on the bench, meditated and soaked in the friendly sunlight. With my eyes too I absorbed in everything visible, then I stretched, sketched and, to aid my memory, took just one photo.
Upon return to my studio in Sydney, I drew the image several times, then proceeded to layer the paint on to handmade rice paper, a medium I often use. As the paper was too large for my table, I painted on the floor. I like to use the chalkiness of gouache combined with the luminosity of French inks.
Whilst painting I continued to have the essence of ‘being there’. It was such a beautiful place to be. All my senses memorised it and I could feel and hear the zephyrs tickling the leaves. I could smell the trees.
I wish to imbue this feeling to people who look at my painting. I so much enjoyed painting it! I also so much enjoyed eating the olives from those very same trees.
I did another painting of The Olive Grove, in a narrow format, using a softer dreamier palette.
“View Through The French Window”
This view to the courtyard, was from the bedroom where I stayed in a marvelous large house, whilst in Cabrieres-d’Avignon.
I opened The French windows each morning, to bring in the fresh crisp air, with sunshine spilling onto the sill.
Upon arrival in this lovely home, I noticed a bunch of ‘Mimosa’ in a jug. It was a little dead, but
I breathed new life into it, painting with primary yellow along with a green that gave the abundance of life.
The green bowl is characteristic pottery of Provence, filled with fresh tomatoes. I changed that to persimmons, as colour-wise it created a better choice.
The Bentwood chair is my portrayal of a still life in Provence.