Local Heart, Global Soul

May 17, 2019

Looking In The Windows…

My second post in this two-parter today is all about the detail of the buildings depicted in “A daytrip into the city”. These are mostly for my architectural detail files, but also for me to drool over the sheer attention to detail that goes into these pieces.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

May 2, 2019

Alas, Feathers Aren’t Flat…

I’ve been laid up of late, with some big limitations in movement (fortunately it’s all good and all temporary). I’ve been doing very little so grabbed my camera and attempted to photograph these feathers. Yes, I am having some depth of field issues again but this seems to be mostly because the feathers are not flat and there is a big difference between the bits that are closest and most furthest away from the camera lens. These are for my artist inspiration files and well, I’ll keep trying…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

April 28, 2019

How Amazingly The Human Body Functions…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

I’m having a another go taking photographs of flowers, this time, not trying to zoom in quite as far as my previous attempts that were less successful (Baby steps).

I was not just interested in the brightly coloured and really beautiful flowers themselves but also the leaves that came with them, especially the large one that had nine sort of “blades” coming off the central stem.

It was most intriguing and more photogenic than I managed to do it justice.

I’m not botanical enough to know the names of the flower but they too shone; vibrant colours and a ton of detail.

Every time I attempt to photograph things like these it (a) gives me a newfound respect for people who do it brilliantly because it’s harder than it looked and (b) reminds me just how amazingly the human body functions because the difference between what the camera lens captures and the human eye can see, are worlds apart.
This is especially noticeable when it comes to things like the nuances of the shade cast by the leaves on the white background, or the level of detail seen in the leaf veins or flower petals. Reminds me of the bible saying: “We are fearfully and wonderfully made”. These photographs are for my photographic reference files… some arty picture in the future awaits.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

April 6, 2019

Carving Up a Storm In The Mauritshuis…

The Mauritshuis in the Hague is more than just  place where Old Masters from paintings Golden Age are displayed. It is also Dutch national Monument building in it’s own right. It’s fixtures and fittings are also a work of art on display…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

April 5, 2019

Catherine, Your Details Are Showing…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

I’m continuing today’ post from my one of yesterday, where I tried to show the detail painted in a painting called “St Barbara’.

Today’s post shows the other outer panel of what was an altarpiece triptych, this time a painting called; ‘St Catherine“.

The Mauritshuis in the Hague has a truly amazing collection of Old Masters, many of which are well known.

Sadly the painter called “The Master of Frankfurt” who painted these particular panels is not so well known or acclaimed, and wasn’t probably even from Frankfurt.

In my humble opinion this painter deserves to be more well known, and you don’t even need to be a specialist in Old Masters, an artist or art history buff to appreciate the skill seen in these paintings.

If you look carefully, in one of the photographs showing the lower right hand corner of the painting, there is one taller plant, and if you look carefully you will see near the flowering head of the plant some of the spokes of a semi-hidden wooden wheel upon which St Catherine stands.

This is of course reference to the wheel on which she was meant to be tortured, it is also depicted as a wheeled machine on top of the mountain as a tiny detail in the top left corner of the painting.

Wikipedia tells us: ‘The Master of Frankfurt (1460–c. 1533) was a Flemish Renaissance painter active in Antwerp between about 1480 and 1520.  The Mauritshuis archive” ‘The Master of Frankfurt‘ Painting: ‘ St Catherine’ (Belongs with ‘St Barbara’)This is the left wing of an altarpiece produced by a 16th-century Antwerp painter known only as the Master of Frankfurt. St Catherine turns towards the missing central panel, which contains a representation of the Holy Family with music-making angels (now at the Walker Art Gallery in Liverpool).

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

St Catherine holds a sword in one hand and a Bible in the other. This martyr was usually portrayed with a sword and a broken wheel, references to the instruments of her torture.

The emperor Maxentius had set his sights on her, but she rejected him. Furious, Maxentius devised a wheel as an instrument of torture, but it was destroyed by a thunderbolt (seen in the upper left-hand corner) before it could harm her. Maxentius then had her beheaded.

The saint’s sumptuous attire is striking. She wears a fancy gown made of costly fabric: golden brocade, white damask and a dazzling material of couleur changeant.”

Dazzling material is an understatement: the white damask has layers of detail as does the red and gold bodice.

But even better, the tiniest bits of the painting also shine: there are two people fishing from the bridge on the right hand side of the panel, the square links in the chain that drops down the front of her dress are perfect in form.

The hilt of the sword she carries is amazingly decorative, the tassels on the dress, the clasps in the book (not stated which book specifically, but possibly a Bible in order to emphasize her sainthood?).

The detail in the plants and flowers, the beautiful headdress (which was a bit too high up for me to photograph really well), are just some of the exquisite details that go together to make this Old Master a true masterpiece that deserves a wider audience.

The detail in these two panels is nothing short of stunning, and it can be assured that I will be stopping to renew my admiration of this pair of panels and their painter, every time I visit the Mauritshuis. The “Master of Frankfurt” may have been just a nickname, but even without true and one hundred percent final attribution to one exact person, the genius of skill that lies behind the painting of “St Barbara” and “St Catherine” deserve to come out of the shadows and into the spotlight center stage.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

April 4, 2019

Brilliance Indeed By The (Old) Master Of Frankfurt…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Visiting the Mauritshuis last summer I walked past two paintings standing side by side.  A quick first glace was enough to stop me in my tracks for a closer look, a much closer look. They were both by the artist “Meester van Frankfurt ‘

Wikipedia tells us:  ‘The Master of Frankfurt (1460–c. 1533) was a Flemish Renaissance painter active in Antwerp between about 1480 and 1520.

Although he probably never visited Frankfurt am Main, his name derives from two paintings commissioned from patrons in that city, the Holy Kinship (c. 1503) in the Frankfurt Historical Museum and a Crucifixion in the Städel museum.”

He is one of many anonymous artists identifiable by their painting style but not by name. The Master of Frankfurt is, however, often thought to be a Hendrik van Wueluwe, an artist famous in Antwerp around the same time as the anonymous painter but otherwise unconnected to any paintings.

His dated Self portrait of the artist with his wife in its original frame (1496; Royal Museum of Fine Arts, Antwerp) reveals that the artist was 36 years old at the time it was made, as well as a member of Antwerp’s Guild of St. Luke.

If he is the same artist as Van Wueluwe, then he was also dean of the guild six times. Attributed paintings include his self-portrait, the Festival of the Archers (1493; Royal Museum of Fine Arts, Antwerp), and the two paintings in Frankfurt.

The Master of Frankfurt is also known for painting numerous copies after earlier Netherlandish painters such as Rogier van der Weyden and Hugo van der Goes for the open market and for developing, around 1500 in Antwerp, a new artistic style alongside his more famous contemporary Quentin Metsys.

Attributed to the Master of Frankfurt, who also painted “Holy Family with Music Making Angels’, circa 1515, oil on panel, 156.2 cm × 155.9 cm (61.5 in × 61.4 in), which is located in th Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool. “Holy Family with Music Making Angels” is the central panel of a triptych altarpiece.

The two side panels depict two virgin martyrs, St Catherine and St Barbara (now in the Mauritshuis, The Hague). ”

This painting, one of those side panels depicts: “St Barbara”, 1510-1520, oil on panel 158.7 x 70.8 cm (each), The Royal Picture Gallery Mauritshuis, The Hague.
These are the left and right panels of a triptych altarpiece. The central panel depicts the Holy Family with Music Making Angels (now in the Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool).’

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

St Barbara is the right hand panel of the triptych,  and apparently according to the Mauritshuis website,

To keep men at a distance, Barbara’s father locked her up in a tower. While imprisoned, she converted to Christianity.

The tower had two windows, but she had a third built, so that the three windows would symbolise the Father, Son and Holy Ghost.

The tower thus became her attribute. In this painting she also holds a book and a large ostrich feather, the meaning of which is unclear.

The plants around Barbara’s feet – including a splendid dark blue iris in the left foreground – were painted with great precision.”

To say that the plants were painted with great precision almost implies that the rest of the painting was not, but nothing could be further from the truth, the entire panel screams detail upon detail, precision, exacting accuracy, clarity and sharpness.

As usual, photographing an oil painting under lights poses problems with glare, but the levels of detail make unveiling the “layers” in the painting a bit like peeling an onion. The detail in the plant, dress, background, decorative elements, fabric…except that peeling this “onion” might move you to cry tears of joy…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

April 3, 2019

Eggers Blows My Mind…

Today I am continuing from my yesterday’s post, and looking at the marble bust by Bartholomeus Eggers. The more I look at this bust the more I think it deserves some extra attention because the detail is so exceptional.  I’ve tried to make a few notes to explain my reasons for these photographic choices…

Bartholomeus Eggers (c1637-1692) (Copy After) Bust of Johan Maurits, Count of Nassau-Siegen (1604-1679) Sculpted 1664.”

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(Below): Take a moment to consider that the materials used to make these beautiful patterns consist of mainly just hammers against chisels…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(Below):  Getting those line straight and crisp… surely the sculptor would be holding his breath with every chisel blow, etching out the design from the block of marble.

(Below):

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(Below): the deep holes in the hair could be prone to chipping in the thinnest areas…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(Below): A masterpiece of design and execution…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(Below): This gradating central pattern running down a sort of ridge, down the centre of the breastplate just blows my mind and is one of my favourite parts of the bust, even though it is so simple in design.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(Below): Layers of depth and design…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(Below): the ruffle on the left hand sleeve… I’m letting out a deep sigh of satisfaction and admiration… this is stunning…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(Below): I’m not too sure what this vine (or is at a snake?) is at the top of this left hand sleeve…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(Below): That chiseled out medal, or order of… thingy… contrasted with the flowing design of the stylized acanthus leaf design…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(Below): necktie clasp details and the deep groove detail under the collar…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(Below): Face detail…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(Below): These ruffles at the end of the sleeves…. right hand sleeve this time…drool… AND detail underneath the freestanding arm…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(below) There is even a tiny elephant detail on top of the belt on the side…  I wish I’d taken more photographs of it.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(Below):  the hand coming out of the sleeve has “skin” that looks smooth and soft…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(Below): Finger detail…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

 

March 29, 2019

Marveling At Old Masters…

More paintings at the Mauritshuis, these old masters get more amazing the more you look at them. Painting black detail and textures on a black garment? Rubens makes it look easy…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(Above  and Below) Peter Paul Rubens (1577-1640) “Portrait of a Man, possibly Peter van Hecke (1591-1645)” painted circa 1630.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Peter Paul Rubens (1577-1640) “Portrait of a Woman, possibly Clara Fourment (1593-1643)” painted circa 1630.

Visitors can loan an audio set to explain many of the paintings…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Amazing painting when seen up close, even the detail inside the back clothing, not to mention the feather…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(Below) Anthony van Dyck (1599-1641) “Portrait of Quintijn Symons (1592- after 1646) painted circa 1634-1635.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

March 19, 2019

Dried Up And Mangled, Soon To Be Swept Away…

My arty adventures require reference material to both inspire and refer to. I take images and see how the composition of everyday life works; the juxtaposition of nature and the man-made environment. Here I am looking at the autumn leaves and their fate in the gutter, having exited the trees with a measure of gracefulness they now lay somewhat dried up and mangled, waiting for the machine that the Gemeente (city council /Town Hall) use to glide next to the pavement a sweep these up with it’s brushes. Leave and trees are a sort of “theme” of mine of late, the beautiful structure of leaves is something I struggle to draw so I need a lot of practice.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

March 8, 2019

Clouds Both Sullen And With A Sunny Disposition…

Our 2017 Easter travels back to the Hague, transversed the Dutch provinces of Zeeland and South Holland. Whilst taking photographs from the front passenger seat, I could not help but notice the differences in the clouds close by. One side was dark, threatening, low and sullen, looking like a storm was brewing and warning that we better get ready for wind and rain. The other side: lighter, fluffy, with the blue sky background and a sunny disposition. The flat landscape gives a larger canvas for the sky, so it’s changing forms are a fascination for more than just the artists who struggle to get clouds to look right in whatever medium they are using. I also especially bad a drawing clouds. Luckily the coastal location of The Hague means a good deal of wind and multiple weather changes, often in one day, or a morning or afternoon, or even an hour. We also see some unusual overpasses, but it’s the clouds that really grab my attention.  More material for my reference files.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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