Italy constantly appears in my memory, as a place where the buildings and the streets are alive with history.
The textures and colors assume a life of their own infused with the centuries of man’s imprint.
And while the people and their warm zest for life are a major part of anyone’s love of the country, the cities themselves are imbedded in my memory as places that embrace life. The scale and the sense of peace amidst the chaotic life that surrounds you is amazing. It is as if the walls and piazzas absorb all the sturm und drang and leave one with a welcome wash of rightness. Everything is of a piece, as they say.
This is a painting about the place, not the people. But in the end it is about the people as well, because their hands constructed it, and gave the streets the quirks and zigs that let one escape into manageable pockets of peace and quiet. In the midst of a huge crowd, there is always a spot to rest the eye and enjoy man’s genius in building such wonderful places.
The piece is also about how the eye works as one travels in cities. There is an immediacy to the scene at street level, but the real interest lies above, where the sky meets the spires and bell towers. And as one becomes aware, that is where life is lived if you are fortunate enough to live there. The apartments and offices are above street level. And the higher up you look, the more interesting the view.
So I always find myself walking with the crowd on the street and recording the rooftops for memory.