The blue is my signature square for the "Cliff Dwellings" series--an homage to human idiosyncrasy. Not that such idiosyncrasy is actually allowed by those regulating historical villages today . . . But just imagine!
Copyright 2016. Brenda Helt, Fine Artist. All rights reserved.
Acrylic and molding paste on a custom built gallery-wrapped canvas with a built-in mounting bracket.
36" x 20" x 1.5"
The subject is inspired by the ancient Tuscan hill town of Siena, Italy; the style is inspired by traditional quilting techniques long practiced by women in the States: the blocking patterns of the traditional patchwork quilts of the Plains States, the idiosyncratic irregularity of the crazy-quilt, and the geometrically placed remnant-strips technique traditional to the African American women of Gee's Bend, Alabama.
In this painting, a major landmark of Siena, the Mangia Tower, or Torre del Mangia--the tower of the one who eats--presides over the residential and public buildings (patchwork squares) cascading down the hillside beneath it. On the other side of the tower is the Piazza del Campo, the shell-shaped piazza that is the site of Siena's famous twice-yearly horse race, the Palio. The center part of the tower and one building at the base of the painting are 3-D objects created with a molding paste that consists partly of marble dust--in keeping with the tower, the lighter colored upper portions of which are marble. Much like actual Italian villas of this era, almost every "building" is at least two colors, and some are four.