Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Exploring and Making Art in Villeneuve les Avignon

"If It's Tuesday, This Must Be Belgium".  Hehe.  JK.  Not really in Belgium.  But it IS Tuesday and I just felt like saying that.  And now, it's time to bring you up to speed on what's been happening here at Workshops in France.  Guests of the Art Retreat have been moving into the Chateau, and everyone is now officially here.  Yay!  We have spent the last two days making art and exploring and we started yesterday (Monday) with Avignon, on the banks of the Rhone river.  Truly an ancient city, it was the home of the Popes from the 1300's to the 1700's.
We made quite a stir when we dropped off our group with their painting gear, in Villeneuve les Avignon, stopping traffic in both directions.  It caused a bit of what we call the "spitter" face on the other drivers.  LOL.
There are eleven of us in our group, and we set up along a tiny narrow street to do some sketching and painting.  I spotted this porcelain face in one of the windows.

Here are Angel and Kathy sketching.

Passersby are always intrigued with artists set up on the street, and like to stop and chat.  Here's our fearless leader, Julie Snyder, with a few of the people who stopped to see what she was up to.

Then there was the art collecting neighbor across the street who stopped, rolled down his window, and played us a tune on his wooden flute.
 Strolling along the streets, I always like to notice the details, like these door knockers.

And the mailman...  Doesn't look anything like the way I get my mail in Long Beach.
We ate lunch in the tiny square there...  why have clear carafes when you can have red ones?
and then stopped at a Mega art supply store on the way home.  Once back at the chateau, I headed for the pool to cool off.  A Mermaid's gotta do what a Mermaid's gotta do.
After a poolside snooze, we all joined up again to enjoy a fabulous fish dinner, with puff pastry filled with spinach and goat cheese, and flan for dessert.  There's also always plenty of fresh bread, cheese and of course, WINE!  All of our dinners are catered, and they are delish.
From Left to Right, meet Angel, Laura, Brenda, Bobbie, Kathy, Aleex, Mary Jo, Belinda, and Nathalie.  Add Julie and I to the mix, and you have eleven!  It is just great to meet and learn from these wonderful artists from Texas, New York, British Columbia, Vermont, Tennessee, Indiana, and North Carolina, who work in a variety of media and have a wealth of stories to tell.  After dinner, some artists decided to set up under a full moon and paint a nocturne.

Here's Aleex.  Notice the wine in the center of her palette.
And Nathalie setting up for the Nocturne.
It has been a great start to a joyful week of creating.
Bonne Nuit from Provence!