Thursday, September 8, 2016


Panicale (Spring)
James Aponovich
oil on panel,  20" x 16"

April is the cruelest month
                        - T.S. Eliot

For most of the year, we live in New England where Spring is defined by mud and black fly season, and the skiing is lousy. Cold, damp and dank. But in central Italy, by early March the fields are turning emerald green and the trees bud out. Although the typical Italian won't shed their parkas until June, the winds start to shift from the south bringing the smell of the Sahara. Life is good.

Benozzo Gozzoli
Journey of the Magi (detail)
fresco, 1459

In 1459 Benozzo Gozzoli landed a commission to paint the private chapel for the Medici Palazzo in Florence. It was a huge gig. The theme is the Journey of the Magi and the landscape is indeed magical.

This painting of Panicale was underpainted in earth tones during the spring of 2014 from the terrace of the ' Pink Palace'. At the time the house across the street was occupied by a man we were told was also the dogcatcher? It once had a beautiful garden tended by the man's wife, but tragically she died and the garden went to seed. Fortunately, an American has just purchased the property, so I have painted a fresh start. May she transform it once again.

I have signed the painting with my oft repeated peeled orange and it shows a woman giving one of Panicale's many dogs a bowl of water.

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