Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Montevideo, Uruguay- the last painting days of my trip

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 Montevideo- the sea, 11 am, from Pocitos, oil on card, 12.5 x 17.5 cm





The final place where I did any painting was Montevideo: a delightful city: I stayed in Pocitos, an elegant amalgam of 19th century and 20th century urban styles, lined with autumn trees.
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Mostly the trip was a success: I worked very hard and was quite prolific- there were a few duds but not too many. Travel is tiring and painting are quite intense activities, and after about ten days I started to weary- perhaps I should have paced myself more evenly, allowing more breaks and days off. Stylistically, the pictures went  from tight to loose:  perhaps this was partly a result of falling concentration.

The countryside in Uruguay was more interesting to me, as a painter, than the city of Montevideo. In the country, the feeling of having stepped back in time, the absence of cars and the presence of horses, the little houses, and the wonderful bright winter light, and the way the landscape is open but not featureless all made it a good painting place for me. The weather doesn`t change every half hour from bad to worse as in the UK. And Uruguay feels safe: children don`t throw stones at one as in Arab countries, nor do traders harry one constantly; and there aren`t stray dogs all over the place, or the sense that things are barely in control, as in Brazil. The people are markedly more reserved than in Brazil, though I found them to be very pleasant.



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Many thanks to Ricardo Merlinski for his generous hospitality at his elegant apartment in Pocitos: the gardens above are those from his place.



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