Monday, March 7, 2016

A visit to the Serra Catarinense: Alfredo Wagner

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Alfredo Wagner, afternoon, houses, oil on card, 14 x 14.5





 Alfredo Wagner, buildings on a hillside, oil on card, 12.5 x 14.5 cm




Both of these were painted from my room in the excellent Saolo Hotel. The breakfast was lacking (why is the coffee in Brazilian hotels so dreadful?*) but you can't really complain for 60R$ a night.

Both paintings are a success- following the terms I have set myself- lively, bright and harmonious,, successful in their description of the sensation of the place, and optimistic. They were rapidly executed, but behind them lie many failed pictures.

 It is important in this style of painting not to contradict oneself: if the piece is about immediacy of impression and spontaneity of response, then one must avoid the temptation to correct, one must accept and work with errors or clumsy marks, incorporating them into the composition: a Chinese virtue.


*part of a larger question: why is the coffee in Brazil so dreadful? Yes, there are occasional fancy cafes where it is good. Here in Floripa there are two, established by Australians. But the standard stuff in bakeries and ordinary restaurants is  dishwater, Stock reply- because the best coffee goes for export. As with all stock replies, one wonders if: a. this is really true and, b. why would it be true? Surely separating some bags of beans for a luxury domestic market would be easy? The same arguments circulate about chocolate.




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