Ahoy There! Castlemaine Festival is in full swing.

26 March 2019

Shiver me timbers!

The Castlemaine State Festival is in full swing, and the town, which has been sleepy for weeks in the intense summer heat, is suddenly abuzz.

Clowns are swinging from the rafters, musicians are kicking up their heels, and waiters are swinging their trays through the throngs at the rate of knots.

The caffè lattes served could fill an ocean.

Here at Studio Rapp, paintings are a-swinging from the walls.
Legroom was at a premium over the weekend; just as well the seas will be calmer now during the week, when the township is less inundated.

Because I have a quiet moment after a weekend of all hands on deck, and because the smorgasbord of arts at the festival has put me in the mood for colour and costume: here is a little bit of visual theatre for you.

The Pirate Bride
oil on canvas, 35 cm x 40 cm
$ 800

May your days be festive!

Katharina

Would you like to comment?

Leave a Reply

 

For Good Luck

21 March 2019

Preparing for a Festival exhibition always carries with it a certain amount of stress.

Working away in my studio, I was interrupted by some upsetting news. After that phone call I was not myself.

When I went to the sink to clean out my brushes, I had an accident with the bottle of turps. What a stinking mess! I mopped it up as best as I could.

Feeling woozy from the fumes, and to steady my nerves, I poured myself a glass of wine and placed it on the desk next to my laptop – and knocked it over. Red wine all over the keyboard!

I jumped up and ran for some rags to mop up – and in doing so, knocked a fresh painting off the easel. It landed on the floor, face-down, little bits of fluff sticking to the paint.

Drama in the studio!

The painting I managed to repair; the laptop, alas, was not so lucky. It has since been replaced with a new one…

In case you should fear a bout of bad luck coming, you could, as a prevention, kiss your computer/laptop/phone screen over this image.

KISS ME FOR LUCK

oil on canvas, 30 x 40 cm

$ 1,800 AUD

May I have the pleasure of seeing you come through the door during the Castlemaine Festival?

From March 22 to 31 2019, Studio Rapp will be open daily from 10 am to 5 pm.

Would you like to comment?

Leave a Reply

 

A Labour of Love

10 March 2019

Australia’s Labour Day comes but once a year.

By contrast, my personal Labour Day comes around with incredible frequency. In fact, if I were an ox, I would buckle under my yoke. But since I am female, and that makes me a cow… better not go there.

What I am trying to say is this: Some people think that a painting is something that just happens. You half-close your eyes, and the thing more or less does itself.

Wrong!

You could say painting is like gardening. You dig in your brain for ideas. You rake the ground for ideas. You shovel the muck for ideas… you get the idea.

Are you familiar with Picasso’s ‘Les Demoiselles d’Avignon’?

Inspired by that work, but replanted into a small outpost of Castlemaine, here are my ‘Demoiselles de Chewton‘ or ‘Ladies of Chewton‘. This is how I imagine them in the gold rush era. They didn’t contort themselves in misery, as they might well have done. No. They got on with it. Labour Day every day.

 

‘Les Demoiselles de Chewton’
Oil on canvas, 111 cm x 84 cm
$ 3,500-

May your labours yield nothing but gold.

And speaking of Castlemaine, the biennial Castlemaine State Festival is taking place later this month, from March 22-31 2019, and I’ll be opening my studio doors every day from 10am-5pm. Do come and visit! The studio address is: 50 Hargraves Street, Castlemaine, Victoria 3450, Australia.

 

 

 

Would you like to comment?

Leave a Reply

 

Do You Spark Joy?

24 February 2019

Something tells me that even you will have heard of Marie Kondo, the Japanese tidying-up queen who teaches you how to keep only the things that spark joy.

* Will you hang on to that single rank rugby sock that once covered the cherished foot of a lover?

* Will you keep the photo that was taken by your best friend, but which makes you look like a body building experiment gone wrong?

* Will you give up hanging on to that guitar on the wall, for years home to a family of hairy-legged spiders?

Out with them.

Donate, recycle (boyfriend included). Deep breath of liberation.

But what about the things that do spark joy?

Will you neatly fold your sexiest drawers and stack them upright in a—ahem—drawer?

Speaking for myself, I have revolutionised the way I keep my joy-sparking socks. Uniformly black, they are all rolled up now, standing like Rollmops in a tin, albeit smelling deliciously of soap.

The white ones that got away are in the image below.

 

GONE WITH THE WIND
oil on canvas, 71 x 76 cm
$ 2,750

 

May there be nothing but order in your joyful madness.

 

Would you like to comment?

Leave a Reply

 

Anatomy of a Painting

6 February 2019

Today’s painting may be just a tad eccentric, but that’s nothing new, is it?

Blame the current heat wave—it made me dream of fresh sea breezes…

As a norm, I don’t like people looking over my shoulder at a work in progress. They see only what’s in front of them, whereas I can see the final image in my inner eye. Today, however, I want to break with that rule—assuming that this drawn-out process might actually be of interest to you. So here I let you peep into the progression of my latest, called ‘Mrs Saltwater at Home’.

Here is photo Number One, taken by daughter Cat.

 

 

The yellow and green are left-over colours from a previous painting. Smearing them on kills the stark white of the canvas, which is as frightening to a painter as the blank page is to a novelist with writer’s block. Next I transfer the outlines from a prepared drawing, and now have to wait a few days, or things will smudge. You can’t hurry your oil paint.

Number Two shows some base colours blocked in. These can take up to a week to surface-dry, before I can continue.

 

 

Number Three picks out more detail:

 

Number Four shows the finished result:

‘Mrs Saltwater at Home’
Oil on canvas, 66 cm x 84 cm, plus width of frame
$ 4,500

I hope the above hasn’t shattered your image of the ‘volatile artist’ who gurgitates his or her emotions onto the canvas in one hit. No. It’s the result of painstaking planning, discipline, patience—and if you’re lucky, the odd slip of inspiration along the way.

Would you like to comment?

Leave a Reply

 

Nosy Parkers Galore

15 January 2019

Finger-print forensic science is so yesterday. What I need right now is a forensic detective who specialises in nose-prints.

If such a thing should exist, then I would like to keep an eye on the culprits who left their flat, nasal calling cards on an otherwise pristine pane of glass. The situation has gone completely out of hand.

Maybe it is my own fault. Maybe I should not have used ‘And Life Goes On’ as my current window display.

 

AND LIFE GOES ON
Oil on canvas, 106 cm x 106 cm, plus frame
$ 6,600

Enigmatic as the painting is, maybe the window-smudgers were looking for clues in the assorted luggage?

Had they asked me, I would have told them this:

‘Look,’ I would have said, ‘isn’t life like a series of rooms, as in the painting? Rooms that you have to pass through in order to become wiser? If you’ve managed to leave your old baggage behind, you are one of the lucky ones.’

The rest of us, who cling to our memories like limpets—be they good ones or bad—find ourselves stranded like the painting’s subject, being followed by emotional baggage. Unless, of course, she now decides to cut herself loose, and opens herself up to a brand new future.

Which way is your nose pointing? Backwards or forwards?

Would you like to comment?

Leave a Reply

 

Happy New Year, from Studio Rapp

1 January 2019

Were you tucked safely in bed by 10 pm on New Year’s Eve, like yours truly? Or are you an altogether less boring person and you celebrated way into the wee hours, and in grand style?

Do you have a sore head now? (ha ha, I could have told you so)

Is your head in a spin? Your brain still in overdrive from going backwards and forwards? One moment asking yourself what on earth you did with the precious time that is your life, the next wondering what metaphorical mountains you will have to climb in the twelve months ahead?

 

ALL WOUND UP
oil on canvas, 45 x 56cm
$2500

Life is uncertain, but a cold compress across your forehead can do wonders.

Let me take this opportunity to wish you and yours a peaceful, fun-filled, healthy, prosperous New Year. It would be wonderful to see you walk through my door one of these weekends.

Would you like to comment?

Leave a Reply

 

Studio Rapp – New Premises, New Beginnings

10 December 2018

As you can see, I am in a quaintly old-fashioned frame of mind tonight. Maybe the first glass of seasonal port has something to do with it?

Here’s to your health!

A good port is the colour of ruby, rich and full of depth, and it reminds me of the past twelve months which were equally condensed.

First I sold my idyllic cottage in the sticks, then I bought a run-down property, dating back to 1861, in the commercial heart of Castlemaine.

The renovations have left me with an elegant working space, as well as comfortable living quarters. The studio is much like a Parisian artist’s salon – a kind of living room where I like to entertain, or mix pleasure with business. You can come and see for yourself, as it is open to the public every weekend, or at other times by appointment.

 

Sometimes my attention wanders in the middle of a conversation. This is usually because a half-finished painting is staring at me from the easel. That hand! It needs correction. That bright cadmium yellow! It needs toning down. It’s like a constant dialogue with a patient, and the outcome depends a lot on the correct doses I decide to administer.

 

 

Having a set-up like this has been a dream of mine ever since I was eighteen. And now, only a mere handful of years later, my patience has been rewarded. Fun, fun, fun!

Studio Rapp is now located at 50 Hargraves St, Castlemaine, Victoria 3450, Australia. Tel +61 419103960. Open 10am-5pm weekends, or by appointment.

Would you like to comment?

Leave a Reply