Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Painting in Rome: from the parks and around the railway station


From v. di Villa Medici, Rome, oil on card, 14 / 11.2 cm

Rome, West from the Garibaldi monument, oil on card, 12 / 15 cm

Parkland in Rome, oil on card, 11.5 / 10 cm

 Temple, Villa Borghese Park, Rome, oil on card, 12.5 x 13 cm

 Near the Borghese Museum, Rome, oil on card, 13.5 x 10 cm

Rome is a pretty great painting city, with architecture whose insistence is sometimes oppressive: seeking respite from this I went along the river and painted the bridges. And I also went to the wonderful parks.

I started to explore the area near the station too. Immediately outside the station is, of course largely devoted to tourism, but move slightly further south and it quickly, magnificently, changes.

There, pitiful shop window displays showing drab and ugly clothes such as a selection of beige underpants of various sizes, each pair strangely stretched in a peculiarly unflattering holder, or some nasty shoes, the dirty take away restaurants and their aging shop signs, and then the men, often immigrants, in short leather jackets simply standing around smoking or sometimes using mobile phones, and the trams and vast nineteenth century blocks in scuffed pastel colours combined to make me feel an incredible nostalgia for some generalised, seedy. ex-communist city in the nineties, St Petersburg, or Warsaw. 

Also, there are non-Italian restaurants there too: something to be grateful for if the unimaginativeness of Italian cuisine starts to pall.


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