Panorama View, late 1990’s, 17 x 5 ft, oil paint
This painting was made on commission for the very large living room of one of our friends. The length of the room was at least 60 feet, if not more, and the width was approximately 40 feet.
Because it was a commission, there were particular constraints regarding the depiction and how the work should be executed. I always like to look at things from another person’s point of view so I have no problem with these requests, I like the challenge of responding to them.
The commission required that the Greek islands and its architecture should influence the painting. Years before, I had enjoyed the experience of a wonderful trip to Greece. Inspiration came from those beautiful memories.
The buyer also mentioned certain colours that they would like to see in the painting, including white, turquoise, and beige. The same Greek subject and colours influenced the architecture of the house where the painting would be displayed. However, I noted that the size of the requested painting was too small for the large room where it would be exhibited. Because the room was so big, I felt that I was getting lost in the huge space. With such a large space a big presence was necessary. So I decided to make a big painting so the viewer could get lost in this artwork as if they are on board a cruise ship, viewing the Greek islands. My inspiration then led me to envision a painting that would make it look like the outside was right in the room. So I increased the size of the painting without saying anything to the buyers!
You can see from the photograph how large the painting is. I made it in three sections. I played with making arches as they are common in Greek architecture. The landscape has two inverted arches which also make a presence in the architecture of the house itself. These arches give the painting more visual length. So if you look at the painting it actually looks like it is more than its actual 17 feet long. When Panorama View was hung in the room it had such a strong presence on entering the space that the great length of the room was completely forgotten.
I made this painting for a close friend. The whole family was very happy with the result in spite of the fact they had not expected such a large painting!
My mother, who is a tapestry weaver, really liked this painting. She made a beautiful tapestry based on it that is just the same size as the original. It is included here.