Thursday, November 20, 2014

STARBUCKS IN PRAGUE, watercolor sketch

STARBUCKS IN PRAGUE, watercolor sketch.
On a particularly cold morning, it felt so good to get into a Starbucks, order hot chocolate and a piece of carrot cake, and warm up for a while!

ASTRONOMICAL CLOCK, PRAHA, watercolor and ink sketch

ASTRONOMICAL CLOCK, PRAHA, watercolor and ink sketch.
Made in 1410, later perfected by the Master Clockmaker Hanuš, this clock was an incredible marvel of technology in its time, even today, combining technique with astrology and ancient religious symbols.  Lots of people wait every hour to see the 12 apostles march around, and hear the strikes of the hour. It surprised me that at ONE O'CLOCK, there was not ONE bell, but THIRTEEN. So it continues with "military time" till 24:00 hs = 24 bells striking. Beautiful! It is located in downtown Prague.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014


WASH YOUR DIRTY MONEY WITH MY ART, watercolor in my art notebook. This image is actually Praha's Central Train Station, painted while standing in the cold, waiting for the Airport Express bus to arrive.
The phrase "Wash your Dirty Money with my Art", I saw it written on a wall, at the entrance of a Contemporary Art Exhibition at a gallery in Prague.  Here, in one blog publishing, you have two for the price of one: a little watercolor sketch of a train station building, and a fantastic phrase. You are so lucky!!And it has a lot of yellow, which my friend Elaine likes!!!

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

PRAGUE CASTLE - St. Vitus Cathedral, watercolor in travel journal

St. Vitus Cathedral,  PRAGUE CASTLE , watercolor in my travel journal, painted plain air, while visiting the castle on a cold day. I didn't have enough warm clothes on, and caught a cold! 

This Cathedral was started in 1344, gothic style, its last renovation was in 1929. This is the seat of the Archbishop of Prague, and the last residence of the most famous Czech men and women. There is a beautiful vitraux de Alfonse Mucha here, which gives the church a touch of modernity in this 700 year old beautiful building. 

Monday, November 17, 2014

ANA MENDIETA at Rudolfinum Gallery, Prague. watercolor sketch

ANA MENDIETA exhibition at Rudolfinum Gallery, Prague. watercolor sketch in my travel journal.
There you have it: a piece of the beautiful old building where the Rudolfinum Gallery of Contemporary Art is located, top left of the page. Then, bottom right, is my watercolor sketch of a photograph  Ana Mendieta  had taken of herself, covered in glue (not tar?) and feathers over her naked body, face and hair. Only her pubic hair and part of a breast are showing through the feathers. She also filmed herself naked and totally covered with "blood" as if she had been raped and murdered, while her friends called to the scene panicked and called the police. Ana Mendieta had an obsession with nature, blood, fire. She died very young, under suspicious circumstances.

SUN OF PRAGUE, watercolor and ink sketch

SUN OF PRAGUE, watercolor and ink sketch in travel journal.
The Church Our Lady of Loretto, in Prague, has an incredible jewel, called "The Sun of Prague". This was made with a donation from Countess Ludmilla de Kolourat, of 6,222 diamonds. Yes, six thousand two hundred and twenty two diamonds, which had been a gift of her third husband when she was 53 years old. So... three is a charm!! In her honor, the jewelers then made the gold center, with 53 rays. Please count, I drew 53 ink sticks in my sketch. There are so many cameras and guards in the bullet proof room where this big jewel is, that I had to obey the signs: no pictures.

Sunday, November 16, 2014


PRAHA, PLACE VENCESLAUS, watercolor, 7x10 in. (15x22cm)

The name of the city is "PRAHA".  In some languages, they change original geographical names, to a spelling and pronunciation considered easier in the language of the speaker. Unless it is something really unpronounceable, I believe it is not appropriate to change the original geographical name to whatever is more comfortable to you. Prague in English, and Praga in Spanish, are widely used. I propose these places do not exist. The city you can actually visit is called PRAHA.

Something similar happens with other places, like LONDON. This is an actual place, a real city. However, speakers of French and Spanish call it "Londres", each with their own pronunciation, far from the real name: "London".

Saturday, November 15, 2014

HILL OF PETRIN, watercolor sketch in art notebook, Prague

HILL OF PETRIN, watercolor sketch in art notebook, Prague, Czech Republic.
This park has been immortalized in Milan Kundera's novels. Most buildings are from XIX C. Beautiful parks, and a fun funicular takes you up there. A replica of the Eiffel Tower, 62 meters high, surprises and offers the best view of Prague. Walking up, 299 steps, built in 1891 for the Prague International Exhibition.

NATIONAL THEATRE, PRAGUE, watercolor sketch from the 2nd balcony

NATIONAL THEATRE, PRAGUE, watercolor sketch from the 2nd balcony, in my art notebook.
Beautiful architecture, gold rooftop and ceilings, built at the end of the XIX C. In spite of financial difficulties, it has kept its reputation for wonderful programs of opera, ballet, and dramatic arts.

All operas are sub-titled in English. Prices are between 100 and 1200 Kč ( between $5- $60 US dollars). I went to see The Bartered Bride, comic opera by Bdrich Smetana, the founding work of Czech opera. It was beautiful and fun!

Friday, November 14, 2014

VIEW FROM MY WINDOW, PRAGUE, watercolor and ink in my sketchbook

VIEW FROM MY WINDOW, PRAGUE, watercolor and ink in my sketchbook
About a week ago, when the moon was full, and the night sky clear, this was the view from my first story room in Prague. I couldn't help it, I had to paint it, even if it was a quick sketch. It was such a  beautiful night! This is downtown Prague, where tramways pass by often, going in all directions. Prague has a fantastic public transportation system; efficient, fast, clean, and inexpensive.

PRAHA ROOFTOPS, watercolor and ink in my sketchbook

PRAHA ROOFTOPS, watercolor and ink in my sketchbook.

It's practically impossible to draw all the details of each rooftop. They are so beautifully decorated, this city of Prague, in the Czech Republic, is a paradise of details and decorated buildings. Some of buildings are several centuries old, so I understand Mucha's inspiration for the posters that made him famous in Paris.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

PRAHA, VIEW FROM THE NEW TOWN HALL, watercolor and ink sketch

PRAHA, VIEW FROM THE NEW TOWN HALL, watercolor and ink sketch in my notebook.

The construction of the tower begun in 1348, when Charles IV was pursuing a grand-scale program as the future Holy Roman Empire. After paying a few Czech crowns and walking up about 150 steps, you have a wonderful view of Prague.

LUNCH AT GLOBE BOOKSTORE AND CAFE, PRAGUE, watercolor and ink in notebook

LUNCH AT GLOBE BOOKSTORE AND CAFE, PRAGUE, watercolor and ink in my art notebook. This bookstore in Prague, has books only in English, and behind it you find this lively cafe, walls painted red, paintings in contrasting colors on the walls, beautiful glasses, bottles, and a friendly service in English. It is a typical expats place, where they get together to play scrabble, chess, chat with friends, or read a book. Me? I had lunch and painted this little sketch in my notebook, of course! Pstrossova 6, Metro: Karlovo Námésti.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Prúhonitzer Park and Castle, Praha, watercolor

Pruhonitzer Park and Castel, Praha, watercolor on Arches, 10x7.
This natural park was founded in 1885 by the Count Emanuel Silva-Tarouca. He used both native and introduced woody species. The result is an original masterpiece of garden landscape architecture that is of worldwide importance. The park, southeast of Prague, is a haven for a variety of organisms. It is a World Heritage Site.

Sunday, November 9, 2014

SEVILLA, Rio Guadalquivir, watercolor sketch in art notebook

SEVILLA, RIO GUADALQUIVIR, watercolor sketch in art-notebook.
Beautiful river in Sevilla, Spain, where two clubs on the river allow people to do canoeing, kayaking, and other water sports. La Torre del Oro, where once the Spanish conquerors deposited the gold they brought from the Americas, stands still, watching time go by...
I painted this sketch while navigating in a turist cruise along the river at sunset.

PIETRA VIVA, watercolor sketch

PIETRA VIVA,  book by Leonor de Recondo, watercolor sketch in my art-notebook.
The author of this book is a violinist, who studied in Boston, directed orchestras. She has received a literary prize for her book "Forgotten Dreams" (2012). I was impressed with her resume.
The book deals with Michaelangelo Buonarroti, in 1505, when he leaves Rome for Carrara, to get the marbles for the tomb of Julius II, and to spend time alone. The book disappointed me somewhat, I guess I expected more. Interesting story.

Saturday, November 8, 2014

The Wind Rises, BY HAYAO MIYAZAKI, watercolor

THE WIND RISES, by Hayao Miyazaki, filmmaker. Watercolor in my art-notebook after watching the film.  It narrates the story of Jiro Horikoshi, who designed several Japaneses war planes during II W.W., and how his work was in direct opposition to his sweet and delicate nature, and his love for his lovely and sick wife. This film is all in watercolors! Beautiful, gorgeous, watercolor paintings, one after the other one! It is a MUST SEE!

Thursday, November 6, 2014

TANGO DE LAS ESTRELLAS, acrylic on a map of Paris on canvas

TANGO DE LAS ESTRELLAS, acrylic on a map of Paris on canvas, 16x16 in, 40x40 cm.

One of the paintings in exhibition at the LATIN ART GALLERY, Jungmannova 17/3, Praha 1, Czech Republik. The exhibition starts today, you are invited to the Opening Reception today Thursday, November 6, 2014, at 18:00 hs (6:00 pm) Come for the wine, stay for the art!

Hope to see you here tonight!!Espero verlos aqui esta noche!! J'espere vous voir ici ce soir!!!!!

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Antiquarium Museum, Sevilla, watercolor and ink

Antiquarium Museum, Sevilla, Spain, watercolor of ancient tiles in my art-notebook.

A few years ago, they started excavating in downtown Sevilla to build a much needed underground parking, and found: treasure!!! Ancient ruins from the Phoenicians and Romans dating back more than 2000 years! Among them, beautiful tile floors of ancient homes, workshops, etc. They built a very modern, interactive museum with their findings instead of the proposed parking space.

This is the most comprehensive collection of archaeological treasures from this city. I strongly recommend visiting it. It is underneath "Las Setas", a modern structure in the shape of mushrooms, in front of Plaza de la Encarnacion, downtown Sevilla.

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Picasso's Birthplace, Malaga, Spain, watercolor and ink

 Picasso's birthplace, in front of Plaza de la Merced, in Malaga. I happened to visit it last Sunday, October 25th, exactly on his birthday!!!
I painted this quick sketch viewed from the corner across.

He would have been 133 years old.
To celebrate his birthday, they had prepared thousands of birds "palomas", his favorite bird, and hang them from the entrance door, plus all over the square, and different balconies around the square.
Here is the picture of the same corner, with the colorful paper "palomas":

after Picasso: ACROBATA, watercolor

after Picasso: ACROBATA, watercolor in my art-notebook.
Visiting the Picasso Museum in Malaga, Spain, I discovered this "Acróbata", painted in Paris in 1930.  The capricious disposition presents the figure in a rotation movement without end. The original painting is square, which may suggest you can hang it from any angle. We could actually rotate it, and the figure almost seems to move around, reminiscent of a circus, or even the Cirque du Soleil.
Impressive!!! He did this in 1930!!!