Art

Procreating Poppies

Coquelicot by Eve Badía (2016)

Coquelicot by Eve Badía (2016)

Poppies charm and disarm with their bold beauty: one that belies the complex reality of how humans have used the potent and often lethal chemicals they hold. They are a symbol of remembrance of wartime sacrifice and as the source of the deadly heroin that constitutes Afghanistan's main export (albeit, obviously a black market) & funding sources for the Taliban and other extremist groups in the region. The poppy is so many things to so many people; it can't help but make a compelling and fascinating subject.

N.B.: I created this in tandem with the game-changing digital painting app, Procreate, on the iPad. The intuitiveness of the interface and the degree of control that one has over the tools within the app is as close to real painting and illustration, as I have ever encountered. I would go so far as to say that for digital painting, it highly exceeds Adobe Photoshop, and it has a smaller learning curve than Corel Draw. If you are serious about illustration and find most digital tools to be a useful but tedious necessity, I can't recommend it enough for digital painting. You still will need Adobe CC to manipulate your work for professional use, but conveniently, you can easily export to psd from the app.

Last notes on La Bourrasque

I have another theory on La Bourrasque and why the different versions but it’s not verified by any scholarly texts. It’s mainly stemming from conjecture and extensive reading of Paris-Bruxelles exhibition catalogues.
I believe that while in Bruges, Belgium, collaborating with Georges Rodenbach, the Belgian Symbolist author, Lévy-Dhurmer was heavily influenced by another master of the oil pastel, Bruges’ Fernand Khnopff (whose pastels of redheads bathed in orange tresses and light glow have been featured here extensively.) {N.B.: see http://symbolisme.tumblr.com/archive} Khnopff’s rousses or redheads, mostly modeled after his sister Marguerite, his muse of choice, feature many of the same traits as the later pastel Bourrasques. In fact, they go from the early ‘brunes femmes fatales’ or brunette deadly females to the impassioned, playful, and ethereal redheads in one year, which is a big shift. Overall, from this date forth there is a more perceivable lightness in Lévy-Dhurmer’s pastel work. And knowing how extensive the connection was between the Belgians and the Parisiens, particularly between the Symbolists, former Groupe des Vingt members (les XX), Rosicrucians & followers of occultist extraordinaire Josephin Péladan; it’s only natural to extrapolate that influences will occur. And I believe that this is one of those cases where the evidence of the influence/elucidation is the fact that the artist revisits the work to make it closer to the original conception of the theme. But I’m not much of a scholar; I’m merely an avid enthusiast. Also, I’m biased in that I have studied Khnopff more extensively than any other Symbolist because I am obsessed with his work and I still marvel at his technique and am haunted by so much of his imagery.

Finishing this today. It might be my fave, so far.

Finishing this today. It might be my fave, so far.