Category: Updates

Short Update

So far I haven’t finished any real paintings at the academy or at home this autumn. I have produced countless sketches, mostly on A4 paper or smaller, none of them meant to last as none of these pieces of paper were prepared with gesso and they will fall apart after some time, no doubt. Just like we do. I am stalling, I know. Postponing. An empty white canvas is daunting.

I am planning a series of works based on the ballad of Heer Halewijn, which is an interesting and rather gruesome tale.

Some sketches:

Still busy with Charles the Bold research. Read some autopsy reports and an account of Louis XI hemmorrhoids, absolutely captivating. One thing leads to another and I somehow ended up in a 1944 movie based on Shakespeare’s Henry V. Charles the Bold is somewhat related to Henry the V but was born 11 years after the latter’s death. I am trying to get hold of a dvd of the movie but it’s not so simple. Until then I make do with hazy pictures and crappy YT clips. I admit I love overly camp movies. Laurence Olivier has great charisma. Probably would have been a good choice to play the Bold except the Bold never smiled and wasn’t such a smooth speaker.

Anyway, made some rough studies in pencil, artisan and oil:

Spoiler alert: they won.

That’s about it, I guess….

The Sword in the Stone – (K)nightly (T)errors

Battle of Agincourt (source of the miniature: Wikipedia)

So the Jacques are elusive. Yesterday, while clearing out the family archives, I came across a reproduction of an old map with a spelling error on it. Or not a spelling error? Were there two villages with the same name? I really don’t know. It’s just a side quest but most intriguing.

It looks like most of my ancestors came from a quite small area around the language border. It was possible to draw a triangle encompassing the main landmarks. Keeping the hoaxy THBTHG in mind, I drew some lines to determine the centre of the triangle. It turned out to be the Roman tumuli where allegedly the Liege people battled against Charles the Bold. Interesting coincidence. There is very little chance anything interesting is still in those graves. Most of them have been raided a long time ago. Definitely not the Righteous Judges or the Holy Grail. More likely garbage bags.

Heer Halewijn

Een sinistere klassieker, op YT een muzikale versie gevonden. Ik weet niet wie de band is. Niet Rum, voorzover ik weet. Was de inspiratie voor een paar schilderijen en schetsen.

Wrestling with too many Jacobs

I’ve lost the thread so I’m running into a lot of dead ends in the last branches of the gen-tree’s maze. I’m wrestling with several Jacques (French for Jacob, nb). Jacques 1 is an illigitimate descendant of John II of Brabant. Jacques 2 is a knight who may or may not be related to Jacques 1, and the same goes for Jacques 3 who may or may not be the father of Sibylle. But if Jacques 3 is not the father of Sibylle, who is it? Well, there is a candidate: yet another knight named Jacques. All this is not really part of the sword in the stone except Thierry d’Alsace, it’s driving me crazy anyway.

Resumed research regarding Charles the Bold. Not reading anything in particular.

Been getting inspiration from Henry V with Laurence Olivier.

Sorely neglected my IG account.

Done a lot of painting too but nothing is in a good enough state to be shown.


Summer slides into autumn. The days are getting shorter and darker, the nights much much longer.

I’ve been quite busy, clearing out a house, preparing work for the two final years at art school, preparing materials for upcoming events, fighting numerous battles with the System.

Charles the Bold is not a valid subject in contemporary art so I am keeping him at home, painting sketches of faded ancestors on paper instead. In the evenings I am trying to complete the puzzle of the family tree. It’s been a strange but compelling journey, involving murders, bastard offspring, famine and the Plague, crusades and dispensations, knights and peasants, dukes, carpenters and Italian bankers and a few drops of the Holy Blood. Currently I’m investigating a medieval woman named Sybille. I don’t know where it will end, ideally in Blois.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox

Join other followers: