Reconstruction in Progress.

It looks like the blogging part/section/feature of WordPress is more or less dead. Even worse, it is overrun with meaningless and annoying spam. Thus I will not continue blogging here in the traditional sense and maintain this as a portfolio site.

Quick and dirty updates of WIP and the quest to be found on Instagram.

WIP – Il Moro

Setting the scenes for two new paintings (one is an assignment). I had a good excuse to spend some time at the toy store this afternoon and play with the cannons and crossbows afterwards.

Your mother was a hamster!

Als voorbereiding op een werk was ik wat onderzoek aan het doen over François Villon, een misdadige dichter of dichtende misdadiger, uit het Frankrijk van de vijftiende eeuw. Toevallig kwam ik uit op een stomme film uit 1927 – The Beloved Rogue -, een redelijk gefingeerde biografie waarin Villon gespeeld wordt door John Barrymore. Het blijkt echter dat de personages Louis XI en Karel van Bourgondië ook een grote rol in de film spelen. De film is weer zo’n fijn jaren 20 geval van kartonnen decors, rare kleren, manliner en groteske overacting. Conrad Veidt is fantastisch als Louis. De film kan oa. bekeken worden op YouTube en archive.org. Hier zijn een paar van mijn favoriete beeldjes. Weer veel inspiratie opgedaan.

Lawson Butt als Charles the Bold
Conrad Veidt als Louis IX
John Barrymore als François Villon. In mijn ogen heeft hij hier een hoog Eric Idle-gehalte.
De damsel (nog niet) in distress
Een van de eindscenes met Charles in een harnas met glittersjaal, Louis met vettig haar en Villon die er nogal Johnny Weismuller-achtig uitziet in deze scene. Hij was net uit een kooi van een toren gehaald

Gaat dat zien, gaat dat zien!

Black chariots

Before the Easter break I painted a lot in the atelier of the art school, all small studies, mostly of knights, but I didn’t take pictures of them. At home I painted nothing that I didn’t throw away or overpainted. A loss of confidence, I guess.

I spent most of my time going through old records and trying to reconstruct the history of the ones that were before me but it’s hard to go back to Burgundian times. I’ve got the maps laid out. Next week, if my nerve doesn’t play up, there may be a small road trip.

Anyway, it is definitely true that one line used to live in the area of a really cool castle (but not in it, unfortunately, ha ha).

The castle of Horst is in a sorry state nowadays, alas. On the verge of collapsing, almost.

There are a number legends about the castle, the one best known is the ghost tale about a black chariot that sometimes appears at midnight in the driveway.

When we were children we would sometimes row in small leaky boats around the castle and get stuck in the weeds.

I could totally live in the castle of Gaasbeek, though. The only thing it needs is a moat.

The Sword in the Stone: Brugge III

The last one about Bruges, just random stuff connected to the Dukes.

After the tombs, I went to the museum (see Brugge I), where I spent quite some time looking at the paintings and some more time in the shop looking at all the weird touristy objects. By the time I was done, I was thirsty and hungry so I had a snack and a coffee which are not difficult to come by. After that I went to the basilica of the Holy Blood. I was just in time for the opening of the doors of the chapel at 1400 hours, which meant this time I was also able to witness the small ceremony when the blood is brought out.

The Blood wasn’t my main goal but as I was there anyway, I queued up to have another look at it. As I wrote last August, it is not allowed to take pictures of the Holy Blood. I also seem to have misplaced the leaflet I got, which has some info.

This time I managed to spot the dukes in the main part of the chapel, on the not so old stained glass windows. It took a bit of experimenting with the settings of the camera to take a decent picture, and avoid the glare of the sun. The B is quite far away as well. He is pictured with his second wife, not the third, for some reason.

And these are Maximillian and Mary of Burgundy. Well I suppose, it’s them, they definitely look like them in any case:

Then I went down to the old St. Basil chapel underneath. There were no relics on show, so a magical sword is still out of the question.

After that I did ‘the Burgundian walk’ I found on the internet, more or less anyway. I ended up in the Prinsenhof where the Dukes had their residence in the city. Now, from what I gather it is a big hotel and a smaller hotel on the side. The buildings look new to me, but then a lot in Bruges is not as old or as old as it looks. According to the info on the website the Karel de Stoute hotel is located where his old town house was, it’s a hard to tell, though.

The somewhat ridiculous The Dukes Palace (not sure what public they’re aiming at):

And the smaller Karel de Stoute:

Then I wandered around a bit until it was time for my train.


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