4 Copy4. 'Porthleven 20'  80x80cms

I've recently found some images of 'Porthleven 20' in progress - a much-loved painting soon to be shown in 'Cornwall, Colour & Coast' at The Old Fire Station Gallery in Henley.The sequence shows my enduring fascination with the dialogue and tensions between straight-lines and curves, pared-down representations of male/female and the man-made and natural elements in the landscape. I had a lot of problems with this painting, stemming I think from the three near-equal divisions within the perfection of the square.

The painting came alive when the nonsense of the clocktower/horizontal was removed - which of course took the eye to the left - and with the introduction of the large paler pink-shape curving to the right. The idea came from looking again at Degas's wonderful 'La Coiffure' in the National Gallery, with the curve of the face and the hair sweeping to the right. This clockwise-movement movement was reinforced by the procession of straight lines cutting across the form. Clarity.

The parelell angled spikes of the slipway make a great entry to the painting. Still fond of the s-shape in 1., a purity of drawing which was a breakthrough in this piece which came back in later paintings in the series.

3 Copy3.


2 Copy2.


1 Copy1.


degas edgar 48'La Coiffure'   Edgar Degas