On a day of celebration of the rescue of the Thai boy’s soccer team and their coach this little watercolor sketch of France’s only goal against Belgium today is dedicated to the memory of Samarn Kunan, the Thai navy Seal who lost his life, together with thanks to the brave and dedicated international team that saved them all.
With the red, white and blue in my painting of Glen Canyon, Arizona, I send best wishes for a Happy 4th of July to my family, friends and followers in the States, although I feel sure like me your thoughts today as you celebrate are for those over two thousand babies and children separated from their mothers and fathers and for whom there is little to celebrate.
The unbearable agony of a mother about to have her baby torn from her arms in this detail from the Scrovegni Chapel in Padua. The image has haunted me ever since I saw it on our visit to the chapel nearly twenty years ago. It was painted by Giotto di Bondone and is as relevant today as when he painted it over seven hundred years ago.
“Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose” -Jean-Baptiste Alphonse Karr, 1849
Spirit Dark after Guernica, in progress
The evolution of today’s post:
The Pacific Spirit Regional Park in Vancouver is a beautiful jewel in our city, a place of peace and tranquility that I have posted about many times, and as recently as this week’s Photo Challenge from The Daily Post. On our last visit there one of my photos inspired me……to set up a number of sheets of newsprint on the studio wall and see where it took me with charcoal, crayon and paint.
I was happy that the image was progressing well and was close to being finished……and then yesterday morning came the news from Spain of the horrific terrorist attack killing and injuring countless innocent men, women and children from all over the world, enjoying a summer’s evening in Las Ramblas in Barcelona. The images were heartbreaking, and one particularly was unforgettable, a baby’s stroller abandoned on the sidewalk and a child lying motionless in the street. I shall never forget the first time I saw Picasso’s Guernica in New York in 1965. It has haunted me ever since, and those images from Barcelona immediately brought it back to me. It is perhaps one of the greatest works of protest art ever created, painted by Picasso after the attack on the city of Guernica in 1937. Suddenly my Spirit Park in the studio seemed a million miles away from the reality of the carnage and horror happening across the sea, and images relating to another time in history started to appear amongst the trees together with that stroller and that beautiful innocent child. As I send sympathy and condolences to all those suffering from yet another crime against humanity, Spirit Dark in some small way is my way of protesting these evil times. One more photo from that morning in the park perhaps allows me to end with a ray of hope in our dark world.
August 11th and 12th, 2017 will be forever remembered as two days of infamy that brought terror, shame, evil and murder to the streets of Charlottesville, Virginia. I send my condolences to the family and friends of Heather Heyer, murdered as she bravely stood up against bigotry and hatred, and whose words on her Facebook read “If you are not outraged, you are not paying attention.”
I also send condolences to the families and friends of Lt. H. Jay Cullen, Trooper Berke M.M. Bates, who also died as a result of the evil that visited their city.
May they all rest in peace and may Liberty’s flame act as beacon of hope.