Ali Matteini

a life creative

mARTEdì: Old Sketches & New Experiments in the Studio

The Kittykatmandoo studio is moving across town to a renovated medieval room. It’s been years in the planning [everything takes a long time in Italy] but now it’s so close to completion I can taste the whitewashed walls and studio lights.

I’ve been making jewellery and fielding orders and sorting out the dilettante postal ‘service’, which, I understand, is a worldwide entropic phenomenon…but…where is my sister’s cheese, my mother’s book, two earring orders, all of which were sent TWO WEEKS BEFORE CHRISTMAS!? FedEx from now on. I’ve learnt a very expensive lesson about Poste Italiene.

Returning to the subject of art: in the preparation for trundling all my art stuff and jewellery making equipment across town, and in the process of sorting and moving things around [hard copy and digital] in our soon-to-be reclaimed spare room I haven’t had much spare time this week to sketch or paint. I did, however, come across my old sketchbook from Australia, where I’d begun re-learning to pencil draw animals with Ken Raffe.

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I’m also still plugging away at this old oil painting. It’s very nearly finished and I have a bit of a painting party [of two] happening here at home tomorrow. The trouble with oils is that, while they’re beautiful to work with, they take eons to dry.

I’ve made a driftwood and copper wire frame for this once it’s finished. Which will be tomorrow, hurrah…+ 1 week’s drying time…
I won’t want to look at it for a while!

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Steering away from oils for a while, some months ago I worked with marbling using China inks on shaving foam [flower background], and nail lacquer on water as another method [centre of the daisy]. I love recycling and using whatever is on hand. The silver petals on the daisy are cut from the discarded covers of disposable oven trays [the trays I wash and reuse, by the way].
Any other suggested methods or mediums for marbling?

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Speaking of recycling, the last time we went to Franci olive oil pressing plant in Montenero d’Orcia, it was the middle of the harvest and I saw that the paper filters would be discarded once they had been used in the pressing process. I asked if I could take a few off their hands to experiment with and they were more than happy for me to do so.

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I took about 12 home and pressed the remaining oil from them between towels for about 10 days, then washed them in hot soapy water three times. It sounds like quite a process but it’s worth it: the paper is big, wonderful, lovely, thick, oil stained, the texture is a lot like the cotton or rag papers used for letterpress printing.
And it’s free and recycled. Let’s see what I can do with them…
Anyone else used this before?

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Grazie, Franci 🙂

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____

 

A presto,

Cheers and Ciao,
Ali 🙂

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