San Francisco Plein Air - Immersion & Encounter
San Francisco Plein Air - Immersion & Encounter Artist statement
Some say walking is the best way to discover a city. I believe it’s painting. For a period of 4 months, I explored the streets, parks and shorelines of San Francisco, armed with a folding easel packed on my back. Each picture was painted on the spot, in 3 hours, in an attempt not so much to capture as to encounter the city’s light, structure and movement.
Plein Air Painting - or painting on location - provides the rare chance and privilege of uninterrupted observation of and uninterrupted exposure to a place. When else does one stand 3 hours long, observing something else than a screen? I had the privilege to be the silent witness of local events. From the criminal arrested on the run precisely in the Oak street scene I was painting, to the ominous choice of painting a carwash soon doomed to be destroyed, and the unexpected magical encounter with a stranded sailboat on Pacifica beach, painting on location proved to be a true immersion into the subject. I painted in thick strokes, bright colors, textured surfaces in an attempt to catch the juicy surprises of life.