Far and Near Horizons New York and Rio de Janeiro Shows

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Vitória Regia, Star of the Waters

There´s a Tupi Guarani legend which tells that whenever the moon hid itself behind the horizon, it took its favorite maiden to live in the sky. If the moon fell in love with a girl, the girl would turn into a star. Naia, daughter of an Indian chief and princess of the tribe, was impressed with the story. Then at night when everyone was asleep , she climbed the hills chasing for the moon in the hope that it would see her.But the moon did not seem to notice her and couldn´t hear her sobs of sadness in the distance. One night, Naia saw in the clear waters of a lake the shape of the moon. The poor girl, imagining that the moon had come to pick her up, threw herself into the deep waters of the lake and was never seen again.

The moon, wanted to reward the sacrifice of a young beauty, and decided to turn it into a different star from those that shine in the sky. She transformed her into a "Star of the Waters," which is the Victoria Regia plant. Thus a plant was born whose white fragrant flowers only open at night, and at sunrise look rosy and dies.
Whenever I go to Rio de Janeiro Botanical Garden I stop at Frei Leandro´s pond to watch the water lillies. This time the "Star of the Waters" called my attention to paint this horizontal  composition.

Star of the Waters Sandra Nunes
- oil on canvas 40 x 120 cm

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High Summer - Flamboyant in Bloom

Along with the unbearable heat, summer comes exploding in color with the lush blooming of Flamboyants all over the city!
These trees have been calling me to paint for some time now,  and soft pastels seemed to be the right choice to make justice to these flowers vibrant colors bathed by the sun.

High Summer - Flamboyant in Bloom
Sandra Nunes
soft pastels 35 x 61 cm

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Kandinsky: Everything starts from a dot.

On view at Centro Cultural Banco do Brasil  Kandinsky: "Everything starts from a dot."
This show brings to Rio de Janeiro works from the artist who is considered the pioneer of abstract art. Most of the works were selected from the collection of the State Museum in St Petersburg. On display alongside works by his contemporaries and by artists who influenced him, the exhibition is a great opportunity for understanding how his art evolved from figurative to abstract.

Kandinsky and Plein Air Painting

Wassily Kandinsky
The Red Church
oil on wood
1901/03


Kandinsky was strongly influenced by Claude Monet, after seeing an exhibit of the Haystacks Series. He was impressed by the way Monet used  patches of color that seemed completely independent of the object represented.
Like the French master, Kandinsky worked  in Plein Air(outdoors), sometimes panting the same scene over the changing seasons.

Wassily Kandinsky
The River in Autumn
oil on wood
1901/03


Wassily Kandinsky
Murnau- Summer Landscape 1909
oil on cardboard

His research on plein air painting went through the period of his life with the German painter Gabriele Münter in France. Both used to work outdoors direct from nature.

Wassily Kandinsky
Gabriele Münter Painting 1903
oil on canvas
(not on display in this show)

Wassily Kandinsky
Murnau- Summer Landscape 1909
oil on cardboard


His interest in form and color led him to construct his colorful way from figurative art to abstraction where the influence of Xamanism, popular art and music is  evident. 

Wassily Kandinsky  Saint George 1911
oil on canvas
His friendship with the composer Arnold Schönberg is displayed through the letters they exchanged:
Kandinsky and Arnold Schönberg letters
Arnold Schönberg set aside in his music the existing rules of harmony in favor of  a new atonal compositional method. Kandinsky wrote in his first letter to the composer:
"You have realized in your work that which I have so long sought from music: The self-sufficient following of its own path, the independent life of individual voices in your compositions, is exactly what I seek to find in painterly form."

" I applied streaks and blobs of colors onto the canvas with a palette knife and made them sing with all the intensity I could"...

"Color is the keyboard, the eyes are the harmonies, the soul is the piano with many strings. The artist is the hand that plays, touching one key or another, to cause vibrations in the soul" Wassily Kandinsky, in "Concerning the Spiritual in Art"

Wassily Kandinsky - Composition 1916
oil on canvas

Wassily Kandinsky - On White 1920
oil on canvas


















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2014 Last Brushstrokes?

Maybe...

Summer has just arrived and the temperature in Rio has been around 40c these days. This is not the best season for plein air painting here. 
The best time to stay out  is very early morning or late afternoon. This morning I cycled to Urca for a quick sketch. Its tree lined streets are a real invite to paint.

My bike-easel set up
Capturing the warmth of this sunny summer morning in Urca
Felix Laranjeiras Square  Urca
Sandra Nunes
oil on gallery wrap canvas
22x27 cm


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Happy New Year!


The Holiday Season is usually dedicated to take a look back at the events of the year. I like to look forward, I get excited thinking about the possibility of starting everything anew! 
Happy  New Year!
If you read in Portuguese check this beautiful poem by Carlos Drumond de Andrade:

Receita de Ano Novo
Para você ganhar belíssimo Ano Novo
cor do arco-íris, ou da cor da sua paz,
Ano Novo sem comparação com todo o tempo já vivido
(mal vivido talvez ou sem sentido)
para você ganhar um ano
não apenas pintado de novo, remendado às carreiras,
mas novo nas sementinhas do vir-a-ser;
novo
até no coração das coisas menos percebidas
(a começar pelo seu interior)
novo, espontâneo, que de tão perfeito nem se nota,
mas com ele se come, se passeia,
se ama, se compreende, se trabalha,
você não precisa beber champanha ou qualquer outra birita,
não precisa expedir nem receber mensagens
(planta recebe mensagens?
passa telegramas?)
Não precisa
fazer lista de boas intenções
para arquivá-las na gaveta.
Não precisa chorar arrependido
pelas besteiras consumadas
nem parvamente acreditar
que por decreto de esperança
a partir de janeiro as coisas mudem
e seja tudo claridade, recompensa,
justiça entre os homens e as nações,
liberdade com cheiro e gosto de pão matinal,
direitos respeitados, começando
pelo direito augusto de viver.
Para ganhar um Ano Novo
que mereça este nome,
você, meu caro, tem de merecê-lo,
tem de fazê-lo novo, eu sei que não é fácil,
mas tente, experimente, consciente.
É dentro de você que o Ano Novo
cochila e espera desde sempre.
Carlos Drummond de Andrade )

Posted bySandra Nunes at 8:26 PM 0 comments Links to this post  

Uruguaiana Street - Merry Christmas

At this time of the year the thermometers start displaying unbelievable high temperatures in Rio de Janeiro,
Downtown, where a large number of popular stores is concentrated, becomes the stage of an explosion of colors with the hustle-bustle of the passersby looking for Christmas gifts added by the sound appeal of the shops trying to attract last minute costumers.
One of these spots is Rua Uruguaiana near the Popular Market.

May the true meaning of the holiday season fill your heart and home with blessings!

Uruguaiana Street
Sandra Nunes
oil on canvas 70x100 cm

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Caminho do Bem-te-vi - Sugar Loaf Mountain


It is a 1250 meters walk along the base of Morro da Urca and Sugar Loaf Mountain, but it is worth the effort. Walking  the so called Caminho do Bem-te-vi is getting  into an oasis of fresh air sided by the lush rain forest, listening to the music of the sea crashing on the rocks mixed with the sounds of the local wildlife.
At the end of the path we are treated to a stunning view!

Painting on Caminho do Bem-te-vi
Sandra Nunes
 
Praia Vermelha - Soft Pastels
Praia Vermelha
Sandra Nunes
Soft Pastels on Wallis
30x40 cm



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Sunset on Guaíra

Porto Alegre
I intended to capture the exquisite afternoon light of southern Brazil. The activity in the sky and in the water was intense.


Sandra Nunes sketching in ´Porto Alegre
Sketching Guaíra waters
Sandra Nunes

I barely had time to finish the sketch and the annonuced rain came quick and heavy A few minutes later, sheltered by  Centro Cultural Mário Quintana dome, I could witness an astonishingly
 beautiful sunset .

Sunset on Guaíra

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At the Ferry Boat Station

There´s something about this place that I keep coming back to paint it...

Estação das Barcas
Ferry Boat Station
Oil on linen
Sandra Nunes


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Rio de Janeiro Botanical Garden Fountain

The Fountain of the Muses
Rio de Janeiro Botanical Garden is a real oasis in the middle of the hustle-bustle of city life. As we enter the main pathway sided by the Royal Palm Trees we can see the beautiful Fountain of the Muses.
Made in England by Herbert W. Hogg, the fountain was brought to Botanical Garden from its original location at Largo da Lapa in 1895.
The Fountain of the Muses
Chafariz do Jardim Botânico
oil on canvas 60x30cm
Sandra Nunes

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Arte de Portas Abertas 2014 - Open Studios 2014

Thanks to all who visited Open Studios 2014 in Santa Teresa. It was great to meet old friends, collectors and make new contacts. If by chance you could not make it,  you can still see some of my paintings,  the show Ateliers in Transit runs till October 11th at Centro Cultural Laurinda Santos Lobo.


Sandra Nunes - Arte de Portas Abertas 2014
Centro Cultural Laurinda Santos Lobo

Arte de Portas Abertas 2014  Opening night and vist
Centro Cultural Laurinda Santos Lobo

From O Globo newspaper

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Santa Teresa Open Studios - Arte de Portas Abertas

This is the 24th edition of this event. I´participating in the show Studios in Transit - at Centro Cultural Laurinda Santos Lobo - 306,  Monte Alegre Street, Santa Teresa.
If you are in Rio, this is a great opportunity to see my art up close and personal. I´ll be showing my most recent works!
Arte de Portas Abertas 2014
 The show begins on September 13th with the opening of Arte de Portas Abertas and  runs till October 12th.
If you intend to visit it afterwards, please email me and we can meet there!
Sandra Nunes - Centro Cultural Laurinda Santos Lobo
Centro Cultural Laurinda Santos Lobo
Soft Pastel on Art Spectrum
Sandra Nunes

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Popular Market at Uruguaiana Street

I´ve tried to capture the hustle-bustle of this downtown popular market. The red awning against the green leafy trees was a plus!

Rua Uruguaiana Popular Market
oil on linen 30 x 30 cm
Sandra Nunes

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Winter Light

Here in the southern hemisphere winter has started a few days ago... 
In Rio de Janeiro the changes are subtle. Misty morning with a warm and lazy sun  slowly breaking through the barrier imposed by the blue  gray curtain. 
Back in 2010, the author of an interesting blog about art and culture used the image of a work of mine to illustrate her post (she kindly let ​​me know it by contacting by email). 
In her text she analyzes the significance of the winter looking for references in Chinese philosophy making the correlation between eastern symbolism and our lives. "... We can see that during the winter we try to 'save' more, ie, try to rest (" save the harvest in the barn "),we invest a lot of energy in order to accomplish our daily journey. ("The effort that all beings are subject to.") 
If you think about it a bit, in winter we usually return home early, for warmth,  "it is  time to focus." And it is at these 'moments of  concentration ', that we achieve self communion, ... "
I agree with this thought. Each brush stroke  happens after a long period of contemplation as an attempt of self recognition and integration to the "New Season".
Oil on wood panel, Winter Light in Urca
Winter Light -Sandra Nunes oil on panel 22x16cm
You can read in the blog post I mentioned above here



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Plein Air Painting in Paraty

Paraty, the Historic City 
Walking around the streets of Paraty is a real challenge, its cobble stoned streets demand attention to each step. Get lost on their colorful corners, sit in a cafe, watch the slow pace of time is worth any sacrifice...
                                           
Sandra Nunes painting in Paraty
Whenever I go out to a plein air painting session, I take some time feeling the local atmosphere, allowing the suroundings to make contact with me, start moving my brushes and paints. The amazing city of Paraty reveals itself beyond its colonial colorful houses.
The post card compositions so many times painted by artists from the past and contemporary as well are a great attraction, but this time what first called my attention was the afternoon light bathing the boats on the river.
Masses of light and color...
ar
Sandra Nunes painting in Paraty
This is one of the paintings that I intend to develop into a larger one

Sandra Nunes painting in Paraty
As usual, passersby stop for a few minutes to talk... This couple kindly compliments me for the painting and mentions that the painter Djanira da Motta e Silva also go inspiration from this bridge for the work"Flight to Egipt".
I hadn´t heard about this painting and I got curious to know how Djanira, who lived here for a time, interpreted the theme.
here it is:
Flight to Egypt
Djanira da Motta e Silva oil on canvas






                                                                    Paraty Paint Out
Plein Air Painting in Paraty
Friends in the Paraty Paint Out 
                                                         Capturing the last lights of the day
Plein Air Painting in Paraty

Paraty, A travel in Time

Paraty, A travel in Time

Paraty, A travel in Time

Paraty, A travel in Time

Plein Air Painting in Paraty

Paraty, A travel in Time


Sandra Nunes, at Praça da Matriz in Paraty
                                                  Sandra Nunes, at Praça da Matriz in Paraty


End of day in Paraty, last lights...
 I´ll post the finished paintings soon...

.

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Spring in the Northern Hemisphere IV

Painting my way through Life  -

This sentence  came with a nice comment of my Canadian friend and I think it suits me, thanks Dan Gray!

A certain conflict happens whenever I travel. There´s a lot to see to experience, learn...On the other hand the desire of capturing what I feel  on canvas or on paper gets into competition. It is wonderful when I manage to squeeze both in the always short  period of time.
Crossing Brooklyn Bridge I was captured by the beauty of the morning sun. I had to stop for a quick watercolor sketch.
sketching Brooklyn Bridge- Sandra Nunes

One of the most moving experiences...
Sunday in Central Park

Not because it was Easter Sunday nor because it happened in Central Park, but for the lightness of the moment I had the privilege of living.
I opened my pochade box by the balustrade facing the Fountain. That site always called my attention and this time I decided to capture the cold afternoon light bathing the Angel of the Waters.


Bethesda Fountain- Central Park

Painting in Central Park - Sandra Nunes

Painting in Central Park - Sandra Nunes
I worked all the time listening to Bach. At the end of my painting session I went to check who was playing that heavenly sound coming from under the Arcades...

Musicians in Central Park

This trio was a side show...
The audience
To avoid a long post I´ve divided these notes on the trip into 4 posts. You can read on here
Spring in the Northern Hemisphere part I
Spring in the Northern Hemisphere part 2
Spring in the Northern Hemisphere part3



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