Clinton Corners, Neighboring House, June 1st, 2019


  1. Fragonard wrote on the back of one of his fantasy portraits that it was painted “in an hour’s time”. Your landscape comes in at just over 1 1/2 hours…
    Speed up!

  2. Dear Michael – your neighbour’s house at Clinton Corners is a really lovely demonstration of your present outdoor technique (do I understand the sketchbook image on paper is preliminary, as well as worked over itself). Now who would have guessed you began with a red ground – its all that exposure to 17th-18th century works at the Met on your easel there I should think. The developing images, of the finished work, immediately put me in mind of Rembrandt’s prints – etchings particularly with their states I, II, III and so on – and to see elisions as well as additions gives one an unusual insight into the thinking surrounding composition and greater appreciation of the point you consider ‘finished’. By the way, the BM have at the moment a wonderful free temporary exhibition of Rembrandt’s prints of various types – from their own collections – which is like a textbook display of all his very greatest works on paper. It’s astounding. If hot-foot via London is possible before 4 August, I do recommend this highly. Less vital, although slightly depressingly telling, is the enormous Summer Show at the RA (which I saw this morning). The depressing part is the inexorable rise of the visual pun, or visual ‘bon mot’ in so much that’s been accepted. One glance, a smile of recognition – and any lasting meaning evanesces. If you had submitted your Clinton Corners painting – it would get a red dot from day 1; if you made a print of it – it would be covered in red stickers…Ashok

  3. Thank you Ashok. Actually the work on paper came afterwards. After I had finished with it on the easel, I wasn’t too happy so I decided to use more wax and add some dark washes – the overworking I refer to – but I preferred it after the intervention. The red ground isn’t typical for me but you are right that my day job probably played a role. Thrilled that you thought of Rembrandt for whatever reason!

Please let me know what you think!