Sunday 23rd June after evening mass outside the cultural centre of Paleo (old) Karlovasi Slow Food Samos offered treats.
Primarily they invited me to expose some art works outdoors there …
I preferred not to take paintings out of the studio but in a slow food spirit work outdoors observing natural forms of the immediate environment, space, architecture and the people. Locals slowly gathered and all contributed in their way.
The art work and process.
I went to the cultural centre and it was closed.
I looked around took some pictures and decided to go down from the ancient pavements that Peter Muller colleague and friend had shown me in the early 80’s.
I was disappointed to see that they had lifted the old pavements and cemented the sides….
I came home and immediately gathered all materials: canvas, pieces of old oil damaged paintings, charcoal, chalk, oil pastles, meter, prime binder, nails, hammer, camera, some buckets, brush and a photo of Peter Muller (Peter died recently from a massive heart attack at the age of 62…. He had shown me along with many generations to follow the paths, herbs, and was always indicating the magnificence and importance of the Samian nature.
My reference the mountain where Peter Muller is sleeping and the column of the neo classical building.
I primed and applied the canvas on the wall.
Then a municipal truck came up with a limestone sprayer to apply on walls and pavements for the fiesta.
I asked Chrysostomos if he’d like to participate by applying some limestone on the canvas…even though I knew that nothing binds on limestone. He was a little shy and hesitant and I said to him you must enjoy it, and, and he did!.
He told me the canvas will be completely white when it’s dry.
It took a while to dry and my arms tired from stretching the canvas with all that wind…
I took Doctor and went home.
With charcoal I drew lines having my reference points from the mountain to column, a yard gate and other points in area such as the stairs that go up to the church.
I observed the tree next to me was too dominate and I needed to balance the energy and the work in process…
I thought of placing bay leaves on the high windows to balance the composition.
I looked for my camera in bag and I had left it at home…
I was thinking all night then decided to place portrait of a philosopher from my series ‘bloody heroes’ and that was Spinoza.
Early morning I went down to the garden to pick the bay leaves.
Went up to the village and the first thing I did was to apply Peters image to the column.
I worked on the canvas with coloured chalk then took the brush and water and smudged the chalk with wide brushstrokes.
I signed it and went home around 4.00pm.
7.00pm we gathered for the last touches. I made a generous bunch of bay leaves and hanged it with the help of slow food members on the tall window….
Automatically I made a laurel frame around Spinoza.
I thank Slow Food Samos for involving me in this interesting and uniting social event.
Maria Sevastaki 26th June 2013.
PS If I would give this work a title I would call it ,,the Sun is under the earth’’
In memory of Peter Muller