In 2020, I developed a series of twenty-one works on paper, inspired by John Singer Sargent’s watercolors of the early twentieth century, of the Boboli Gardens in Florence, Italy. Located in behind the Pitti Palace, it is one of the many Italian gardens invented as escape into “Eden”, and now serves as a quiet retreat from the bustling urban center. Here, Sargent made several on-site watercolour paintings of many fantastical and mythological sculptures that juxtapose foliage, ponds, and architecture.
I painted the Boboli Garden series in my studio from photographs I took during a visit in November 2019. Exploring Sargent’s locations and technical methods, my intent was to visualize other ways of working including mark making. It was also an opportunity to experiment with combining water-based media (gouache and watercolour) and dry media. Works can be viewed at Rosso Cinabro Gallery in Rome, Italy and Art Placement Gallery in Saskatoon, Canada.