Baby 'Bigger Trees Near Water'
In DH's studio in Kensington last weekend looking at the baby version of his enormous undertaking 'Bigger Trees Near Water' that has just opened at the RA Summer Show. The original work is some 40 foot wide and comprises 50 canvases, all painted outside, using a computer to track the progress of the work. The entire project took 4 weeks and was a race against the encroaching spring. This smaller version is a 60 per cent facsimile of the original work and was made by photographing the individual canvases, the resulting files being printed in LA and flown back to London.
Although it's a bare winter scene, I find the way the trees reach upwards joyous and celebratory, and even though it's a bleak view there's plenty of unexpected colour. Looking at my own winter painting 'The Melting Snowman' at my last show David pointed out that he could tell I hadn't observed my spindly winter trees because the branch ends all pointed slightly, and probably depressingly, downwards (one of many comments pointed out forcefully and described in the air with the aid of his walking stick). I think for the next stage of my childhood explorations I should revisit the places that made me. I think the work could take on a greater depth by exploring memory in situ, rather than using flat photographs as triggers over a distance of years.