Yesterday, I took the intercity bus into Palma and then the local city bus out to the Joan y Pilar Foundacion. It was a new area of the city to me and just past the chintzy beach shops and casinos catering to holiday tourists from the UK and cruise shippers, was a bit rough around the edges. Surely if one needed to get off the grid, this would be an ideal location to disappear.
The museum itself featured a first class gallery space – the main hall, opened in 1992, I believe, dedicated to a Miro exhibit, and two adjoining halls- one a photo/print interpretation of Miro works; the other photos of his studio and the collectibles in it. It was easy to make the connection between his works and the objects he collected. These could also be seen in his two studios, also viewable, on the property. A small side exhibit explained his relationship with architect and designer Sert. Sert was also dean of design at Harvard, designed the US embassy in Baghdad* and on display was a photo of his Cambridge, MA, home, with a Miro painting on display within it. This Miro studio was an open, modern floor plan and allowed Miro to have going many pieces at once.
The traditional building studio was more rustic on the inside and large drawings- graffiti- by Miro are still visible all over the walls.
The grounds also feature large scale sculptures and two pools, one rooftop infinity pool looking to the sea, and a lower one with the largest koi I have ever seen.
I loved seeing how Miro worked, the personal collections, the studios, and preliminary drawings. I am not personally drawn to much of his work. I appreciated most his sculptures and my two favorite pieces were a large “rug” made of several materials including jute- it was a wild, dimensional piece hanging on the wall like a wooly mammoth. I also quite enjoyed a piece that may have been titled Souvenir de Eiffel, a sort of tower of bronze that featured a dangling string of tied twigs (the top was a wide open animalistic mouth).
This quick sketch was done later in the day in Palma, when I happened to find myself pausing to eat my ensaimada on a bench on Carrer de can Puigdorfila.
*I don’t have my notes handy.
At the bend in the drive of Can Torna is another rusty old tractor, this Super 55. Of course, I wanted to sketch it. Despite making several thumbnail sketches, I still did not fit this on the page. I also completely scaled the back tires wrong and attempted to correct this with a fatter pen- this was made with the Staedtler Fine and Medium pens. I am also using a pan of Winsor Newton Watercolors that I squeezed out prior to leaving.
Today was low key, running then reading at the 700 yr old farmhouse in the rural mountain countryside.
Yesterday I decided to do smaller, faster sketches before making a larger one- a direct result of starting right into a sketch without properly assessing form accurately. In my sketches, I strive for freshness and accuracy and am generally not satisfied sacrificing one for the other. I am also experimenting with color pairings and attempting to be more bold with laying in color. I am having a bit of trouble getting a representation of the solidity of these colors, which appear washed out no matter how I adjust in the iPhone.
The water bottle on this page is a nod to the many, many German cyclists who are on the island and providing the whirring and clicking soundtrack to my in-town (Esporles) sketches.
The grounds of our lovely accomodations included geese, a donkey, fat little pony and many rusty machines. There was a garage with an antique pickup truck, tools, Polski Fiat gas pump and also this (and other) steam engines. This was a Merlin Verzion (need to double check the spelling). The pony and donkey, and the enveloping scent of ripe lemon and orange trees- oh and the resident pup- kept me company while I made this sketch with my new Lamy joy, which took a little getting used to.
A busy day, starting with a full Irish breakfast at the hotel and then Airlink into the city. We learned a fair amount at the new GPO 1916 Rising exhibit, as well as at the Gallery of Photography exhibit (also 1916 Rising photos). We tried to continue the theme with a visit to the Kilmainham Gaol but were too late in the day to get tickets and went across the street to the IMMA instead. Weather was of course wet and cold and not much time for sitting and sketching. More when I have better internet as well.
This sketch was made with a no. e Made in France Conte crayon I found while packing. A deep black, it’s a good smudgy substitute for charcoal. Thankfully, a kind woman at the pub ran out the door after us, returning my pencil pouch, which I had inadvertenly left behind.
We had a short nap followed by rejuvenating showers and cappuccini then headed into town on the Airlink. Trekking to a new to us neighborhood, Harold’s Cross, we had pints at MVP, a dog friendly pub, where we met Groucho the pug-terrier mix and his two human partners with whom we had a lovely chat. They recommended walking from there down the canal to the Camden street area restaurants. We were headed to Whelan’s anyway so that worked perfectly and we had a great meal at a place they recommended, Green 19, with local MacOivers cider.
When you don’t have anything to share about your flight that is a good travel story. Everything went smoothly leaving Boston and arriving in Dublin and I had time for a quick sketch with my Fine Staedtler black pen. Unfortunately I added in some people at the end who are not to scale. I’ll likely add color to this anyway when I am settled in Mallorca in a day or so.
This is the first post of my reactivated blog. It’s been a year since I’ve been able to travel internationally, and I am really looking forward to the trip. benshotme and I have got two countries and four flights on the itinerary, and though you may have read some posts in the past here about traveling light with my art gear, this time I’ve decided to forego the oil paints altogether and simply pack sketching materials. Traveling light, seriously, this time I mean it.