#seventeensuns Nº 27
#seventeensuns Nº 27

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Price: £860


Description
oil on calico laid on board  8ins x 8ins “Over a period of seventeen years, from 1826 to 1843, on every clear day, the Swiss astronomer Heinrich Schwabe made detailed drawings of the Sun. These accumulated in his notebooks, now held in the Royal Astronomical Society Library in London. Schwabe’s observations of sunspot activity led directly to the discovery of the solar cycle. To celebrate this feat of astronomy and the start of a new cycle, I was invited by Mayes Creative to lead an accumulative social media project called Seventeen Suns, based around the idea of solar observation, as part of their Measuring The Universe creative engagement programme. Since the start of the project I have painted every sunrise with an immediately visible Sun, in keeping with the tenacious spirit of Schwabe’s immense achievement. These have been completed live, mostly from the window of my studio in St Ives, a few from other locations. The discipline required and the illuminative nature of the subject have made me see things differently, and have changed me.” N°27, 05:50 sunrise Gwithian. Alarm’s on for 05:15 today, come mid-June it’ll be at its earliest @ 04:30, so this morning’s a lie-in. Enter the studio to a scene of kaleidoscopic contrast, which only increases while I start painting immediately, applying stock of the last few days’ mixes stored on board offcuts. Ironically and usefully, the sea is a flat slate expanse with barely any variation. Gradually a highly saturated crimson emerges in the mid-heaven bouncing off cloud, and I mix on main glass palette with brush for speed. At one point I tread on one of the stock boards and am dancing in paint. Enjoyably fruity actually. The cuprous hue of the burnt umber with a nip of english red second stain, is the same as that of the areas of reflected crimson blending with grey cloud, so they stay open. Arrival of the Godrevy foreground promontory over the last few days, now the Sun has moved round, inspires an off-centre composition, which is a pleasant change. I build Sun gradually with medium brush tip, brightening tones as it rises fully into the picture and close happy...
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