Friday, January 28, 2011

Folkloric Fantasy

Acrylic Painting - 14" x18" By Mary Maki Rae 2011 (c)
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Leafing through some of my smaller paintings recently - I came across this one -  that because of it's Italian Palette and stenciled-like cloth - put me in mind of an article that I saved in my files for future reference.
I thought that what Idarica Gazzoni had done to enliven the walls of her classic Italian farm house quite Inspiring-!

When not painting at home - she travels around the world - tranforming prosaic wall surfaces - into dazzeling settings.
After learning the basic techniques of decorative wall painting from the famous Van Der Kelen - she went on to develope her own style: Bold - Sassy -and eclectic.  And came up with the following: Dramatic results in little time. Hence her use of Stencils-!
The Terracotta-pink farmhouse with lavender-gray shutters -
 located in the Monferrato region - near Turin.

In the Hallway leading to a guest room - Reproductions of old Bird & Animal Prints have been glued directly onto a deep yellow wall -
with white "Frames" stenciled around them.

A rug from Moracco - a Sari on the Table & a Striped Curtain pulled back to reveal the Entry hall's Stenciled Walls.

A Close-up View of the Hand-stenciled Motif used on the Hall Corridor's Walls

The Bedroom - Stenciled with more White "Frames" -
Inspired by Traditional Indian wood carvings.


A guest bath - note the Beautiful Carved Indian Mirror Frame.

In her husband's studio - the walls are covered with Thousands of
Hand-painted tiny white Daisies.
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Images: HOUSE & GARDEN - July-2001
For more about Idarica Gazzoni Click Here
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Sunday, January 23, 2011

Villa Medici

"Muse with Peruvian Lillies" - By Mary Maki Rae - 2011(c)
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After so many Blue Paintings - I'm thinking about a warm retreat to an Italian Palette of Light Terracotta - Golds - Soft Blue - Mauve - and Green.
I've painted a myriad of Peruvian Lillies - always a Joy- with such a wide color range-!  Once established in your Garden they will grow quite profusely-!
I wonder if they would bloom in Italy - I can just imagine a hillside covered with these treasures in beautiful vibrant drifts-!
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The VILLA MEDICI - home of The French Academy of Fine Arts - a majestic - somber - theatrical 16th Century Palace - built for the Grand Duke of Tuscany - Ferdinand of Medici.
The Villa houses a collection of antiques assembled by the Medicis during the Renaissance - as well as fragments of bias-relief encrusted within the stuccoed walls.  Thus a well-favored place for choosen Artists to study Classical Sculpture and Antiquity first-hand.

Here the Painter Balthus (one of the last monstres sacres) of the 20th Century and among the rarest and most expensive artists in the world - was appointed director of the Villa in 1961.
Balthus restored the building with infinite care and thereafter used the premises to entertain Roman society - mostly royal - for the next 15 years.
Part of The Academy's Collection of Casts - which the Artists studied -  to learn Classical proportions.
The famed oriental-style "Turkish Room" was decorated by french painter Horace Vernet when He was Director of the Villa (1828-35).

The also Famous Painting: "La Chambre Turque" By Balthus (1963-66)
The model was his wife Setsuko -
a descendant of a long line of Japanese Samurai.
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For more about Villa Medici see:
The WORLD of INTERIORS -February-2002
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For more about Balthus's Very Own Castle see:
The WORLD of INTERIORS - April - 2002
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Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Blue Radiance

"Bouquet in Blue" By Mary Maki Rae - 2011 (c)
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A Radiant Bouquet arranged in a Brilliant Blue Pitcher -
Enhanced with a striped Moroccan Table Cloth.
What makes a Painting more radiant than another -
and almost demands to have a room designed around it-?

Is it the presence of All Three Primary Colors - Red - Yellow - & Blue
or the constrast of a dark background-?
From my experience - I believe it's ALL of the above elements.
Also - I've found that touches of White Accents helps too-!
This is an Acrylic Painting - 14" x14" -  MMR 2011(c)
More information: See Etsy
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Wednesday, January 5, 2011

The Green Room



"Green Garden Muse" Acrylic - 18" x18" By Mary Maki Rae 2011(c)
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It's that time in Winter again when after a few days of dazzeling sunshine - that the gloomy gray days take over - for a while.
This is when I turn to my Garden Books to dream of a Summer Garden - or check out the new Decor Books for inspiration indoors.
For example - Carolyne Roehm's "Passion for Interiors" - Her exquisite and beautifully conceived new book - wherein she brings the "Classic/Lux Style" to new heights-!!
Following are images of "The Green Room" - (small by her standards - but one of my favorites-!)
I think it's interesting the beautiful way the cove structure has been added to the ceiling & how the striped fabric continues up to include it - creating a jewel box feeling.  If the a room were large enough - one could also build the arch around a window - then use the space on each side for secret closets. The striped fabric would - of course - disguise the doors.
I also admire how the Head & Foot Boards padded - so soft & cozy.
The Yellow fabric covering the bed & cushions are recycled from Hand-painted Silk Taffeta Curtains.  The regular rhythm of the striped wall covering is reportedly - soothing rather than busy.

Antique Swedish Clock - (was green - repainted white)

Charming Vignette of Garden flowers - botanical prints & a small dish - bearing a leaf imprint. ( an example of delightful pottery created by Josiah Wedgewood know as Drabware)
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THE BOOK: "A Passion for Interiors" By Carolyne Roehm
Clarkson & Potter NY - 2010
Buy it - It's worth every penny-!
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