Wednesday, November 29, 2023


This started out as what I thought would be a quick pencil sketch to take a break from a complex portrait I'm painting (will post photo of it when finished). I put the Granny Smith apple and ripe banana on a plain white surface and started drawing. But when they began showing off I was held captive and didn't get to bed until 6am. If you pay close attention to inanimate objects - or anything else - they take over.

Tuesday, November 28, 2023


A portrait of myself at nine years old (but painted in 1981) is currently hanging in the exhibition celebrating 12 years of ExPurgamento, the original gallery-at-home which artist Natalia Zagorska Thomas created and keeps alive and kicking in Camden Town. She invited all the artists she has exhibited (including me) to submit one very small work as space is limited. She chose this one of mine. Nathalie at Nine. Oil on wood panel. 15 x 12 x1 cms. I had done an etching of the same face in my livre d'artiste Mozart, Matisse, Blanche et Moi (1990) This is not in the exhibition. ExPurgamento Exhibition runs until mid December. Opening times: 11-5 Sat-Sun All other times: call ExPurgamento to check or make an appointment. Tel. 07799 495549


Little things that make me happy. I'm in a local hardware shop buying some household item or other. A man walks in, sees me, comes over and embraces me enthusiastically, kisses me on both cheeks 'Ciao bella! Come stai?' he says. 'Bene, e tu? ' I reply while embracing him and kissing both his cheeks. Who is he? For a moment I'm not sure because he has a heavy winter coat on. But then I recognise him: he's the owner of a little Italian restaurant round the corner where I occasionally go with friends. I don't really know him but he always embraces me and I embrace him back. For some reason this sort of thing happens to me quite often. I'm warmly embraced by men I don't really know who happen to be café or shop managers and I respond in the same way. Why not? It makes me feel irresistible. Even if it's only because I'm small and old and smile at people.

Wednesday, November 15, 2023


I made the thing below a few weeks ago. It was born from a spontaneous meeting of unrelated scrap materials. My studio has quite a bit of stuff I keep in case I want to use it some time. There has to be mutual attraction between me and scraps I want to save from the rubbish bin, we have to click.

This one 'ASK ME SOMETHING' is small: Height: 18cm Width: 11cms Depth: 4cms
I posted a photo of it on Facebook where it was noticed by a blogger friend who then pointed it out to his mum: Lo and behold, to my great delight ASK ME SOMETHING is now hanging on a wall in Pat Thistlethwaite's home. She has named him Diego which suits him very well. Coincidentally and serendipitously (same thing) it was in Mexico, home of famous mural painter Diego Rivera, husband of famous painter Frida Kahlo, that I was a student of mural painting way back in 1956. But that's a long story. Here is my little construction. He is not Rivera but he is now a 'Diego'.