A selection of my work of the past few years
View this post on Instagram
Sometimes it’s the first sentence doing the trick. In ‘The only story’, the new novel by Julian Barnes, it goes like this: “Would you rather love the more, and suffer the more; or love the less, and suffer the less? That is, I think, finally, the only real question.” There you sit, then, in your cosy rocker, ready to take the first sip of a hot cinnamon tea. If you thought you were off for an evening of lazy reading: forget it, by bedtime the worrying will be knee-high. Painters often show more mercy: “As a child I had a little garden with roses and strawberries in it.” First sentence of Kurt Schwitters. That’s more like it. Your heart starts melting. It feels like home (that’s where your heart is supposed to melt). You can almost taste the strawberries. Or: “The blue tramway passed through the streets like the embodiment of a fairy breeze that makes breathing light and joyful.” (young Kandinsky, in Munich). . Home. I’ve always had this same homecoming feeling when looking at Vuillard’s interiors, and now I have it watching Anna Maria Vargiu’s paintings. It’s as if I’m roaming an ancestor’s house. I know for sure I’ve never been there, not in this life anyway, nor have I ever been in Anna Maria’s Warffum, and still: it feels as familiar as can be. I can try to analyze it, talk about palette or brushstroke and the composition of the interiors and still lives. But that’s not the point. The point is: you feel wrapped up, in a box full of roses and strawberries and afternoon tea and shivering aunts feeding homebaked biscuits. And yet… The counterpoint is in the selfportrait: a pur sang 21st century youth is, slightly accusatory, staring at you. And so, from the soft and hazy distances of the past, we’re back to Barnes and the deep, modern questions of existence. It’s all in Anna Maria Vargiu. I think it’s a brilliant path to go, and I’m curious for more.
View this post on Instagram
When you attract butterflies the way this lady does, you can’t be bad to the bone. No, then you must be a flower. A delicate one, moreover, because – look at that pinky. . Btw, did you know amongst the thousands of flower varieties - even the most exotic ones -, only wild orchids consume their tea like this: pinky straight up? No? Didn’t you? Well, i understand – for they only drink their cups at night, when we humans are deep asleep. Then they come out of their flowerbeds, run barefoot (of course orchids don’t wear shoes) towards the kitchen in search of the waterboiler. They go crazy over Pickwick, btw. Nobody knows why. . While i’m looking at this painting (200x150cm!) by Anna Maria Vargiu a message pops up at my screen – my dear friend L. has given birth to a girl named Emily Elisabeth. E.E.! Suddenly i imagine fairies, and butterflies, and orchids, and small, small hands and tiny fingers, and this last stanza of a love poem by another E.E., the poet E.E. Cummings (1894-1962), comes to my mind: . (i do not know what it is about you that closes and opens; only something in me understands the voice of your eyes is deeper than all roses) nobody, not even the rain, has such small hands . Welcome to our world, E.E., - just know: “’May I be I’ is the only prayer—not may I be great or good or beautiful or wise or strong.” (E.E. Cummings)