|'Sunset Ltd' 120x120cms|
The third and fourth paintings in the Amtrak series, showing the journeys from Los Angeles to New Orleans and then back to New York.
As well as referencing my travels, 'Sunset Ltd' was also driven by the challenge of making a circle work in the centre of a square. Before this piece I had had a rare commission where part of the brief was to place a sun in the centre of the painting. I struggled with this and moved the sun slightly towards the bottom edge, breaking the perfection.
in a way,I felt I had avoided the challenge so I made an identical 120cms square canvas and screwed down in the centre a circular piece of wood that had been hanging around in the studio for years. The idea didn't come until a few weeks later when i read 'Sunset Ltd' by James Lee Burke where New Orleans and the train-line feature.
The expressive brushwork of the oceans spins around the still centre, flamboyant shapes continue the movement across Canada. Desert colours, the Great Lakes like palm trees. Within the plateau of the circle is the image of a sun setting behind a mesa, which also reads as the Texas Panhandle....map-truth and painting truth, plan-view and frontal view, once again intertwine.
'Crescent' below shows the last leg of my journey from New Orleans to New York. It is a strange piece, sweet colours, the pale-blue hints of sky and I see the image of a horse.