Sunday, October 31, 2010


The opening reception is 2 weeks away, the art work is completed and ready to hang, and all that remains is some major cleaning in the studio and gallery, removing the present work, hanging the show, cleaning up some landscaping, and planning and preparing the food. Two weeks should be enough time to accomplish this....right?

I gave my friend Nathan Brown (creative director at Paducah Printing) a CD with several images of my work, including one photograph, knowing he would create a great poster for the show...and he did.

Preparations for the show have monopolized my time and efforts for the past few weeks, and will continue to do so until the reception. Beyond that...I have not given it much thought. It will be interesting to see what happens in the studio.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010


It is officially finished! My wife has seen it and suggested some some minor changes which are now completed. As usual, she was correct, and I have learned to heed her advise...most of the time.

Here are the before and after pics.

Monday, October 25, 2010


Not long after moving to Paducah 8 years ago I began playing with left over scraps of museum and illustration board, combining them with other "stuff" I had lying around the studio...left over from my model railroad days. The result was this mixed media skyline, OK, but not good enough to hang on the gallery wall. Sometime later I decided to place it on the front of the house under the porch, even though it was not really weather proof. To my surprise it survived for almost 5 years. What you can't see in the pic is the warping and peeling of many of the pieces.

All in all it has served me very well and is now destined for the trash, after salvaging a few parts.

Sunday, October 24, 2010


Progressing at a little faster is the latest version of this 12x48" Tuscan landscape. All that remains is a bit more detail on the house and a few "sunlit washes across the fields on the right as well as the house.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010


I've been told my grandfather had the first legal winery in southern New Jersey. He produced wine in the early 20th century from his small family vineyard until prohibition put him out of business. The vineyards were still there during my early years and I remember them well. He and my father continued to make wine every year, a tradition my father continued for the rest of his life. As a young boy I remember the 5-6 barrels of wine in our cellar where I would take an occasional drink from a mason jar lid. It bothers me that I cannot remember when the vineyard was "removed"

What follow is a dream I had several years ago:

"I am walking through the flat south Jersey fields of my childhood, heading east into the land that once was the Renzulli farm. To the south I can see the Goffredi homestead and the fields where we played so many baseball games. To the north, beyond Siciliano’s farm is the silhouette of the cannery; I could still see the trucks, overflowing with ripe tomatoes, lined up during the glorious late summer days, the air smelling heavy from the tomatoes being processed for canning.

I am explaining all of these images to whoever might be with me on this dreamy journey, as we enter the overgrown field where our vineyard once so proudly thrived. ( t was a small vineyard, perhaps 15-20 rows of grapes about 500 ft long. But to me it was a magical playground, where the large leafy plants offered many intimate hiding places, nurturing so many fantasies and dreams of a young boy playing his games. And the best part? At any time you could pick a handful of large grapes, white, blue,or red, and squeeze the skin and pop the pulpy, juicy grape directly into your mouth.) Once I am in the field, I am alone, and my only thought is to look for signs of the long gone grapes, hoping there might be one or more small shoots that have survived after all these years. I begin to dig and scrape away some of the surface soil, and to my amazement, and delight, find old, thick, gnarled roots, one of which has a small green shoot trying to extend upward. I continue digging and looking and am rewarded with several more roots with signs of tender life.

Before attempting to remove them I know I must do two things, first, get permission from the current owners to do so, and second, do some research on how to safely remove and transplant the roots.

I want to restore-resurrect the grapes of my grandfather and father. I want to see the Renzulli vineyard, producers of Father & Son Claret, thrive, one more time."

Friday, October 15, 2010


It has been 4 days since I returned home, and am finally getting back into a comfortable routine. I've completed the last of the large watercolors for next month's show, and can now focus on the 12x48" canvas in progress. Here are pics of the watercolors:

Polazzo d' Accurso

on the Piazza Maggiore

Castello Estense in Ferrara

Wednesday, October 6, 2010


so 3 days with Beth is followed by 3 days with Sara and her family, husband Dave, brewmaster supreme, and 7 year old Max and 5 year old Evan. (as well as one horse, one pony, one donkey, 3 chickens, one cat, and 4 dogs...can't seem to get away from the dogs).



And then there is the art. There was a time when I would instruct Sara, but now the reverse is true...she is a gifted artist.

And last but not least...her felted critters:

Monday, October 4, 2010


950 miles, I thought I could do it in one day but alas, I am not the tiger I like to think I am. So instead of arriving late Friday night weary and bedraggled, I arrived rested and ready to go early Saturday morning. After persistent pleading from 7 year old Leif, we got out the pastels and had our fun...everyone got their hands dirty working with the pastels, but the results were worth the time and grime.

Beth, Lief (7), and Cleo (11, at work in our " studio"

The results...

Landscape by Leif

Landscape by Cleo

Landscape by Beth

Art is where your heart is.

One more day with Beth, Carl, Cleo, and Leif, and then it is on to Sara and her family.