Monday, April 4, 2011

Van Gogh and Levitation

A New Roof for an Old Friend an 8x8 oil by Shirley Fachilla

Van Gogh’s Church at Auvers is a portrait of a church made of bricks and mortar. But the painting reminds me more of a rocket launch. Caught from an unusual perspective, with several of its verticals aiming to converge at some point far above it, the church looks as though it’s ready to levitate right out of this world and into the next.

Van Gogh, perhaps more than any other painter, caught the both spirit of the Gothic style (light, air, and soaring space) while imprinting it with his own vision. His church is both beautiful and a bit scary. It’s a relatively small church; just think what he might have made of a cathedral!
The building in my painting was once a church; and while I painted it, I thought of Van Gogh’s Church of Auvers. Perhaps its was the vivid colors of sky and building or the particular perspective, that made me picture Van Gogh’s painting in my mind’s eye. Mine has a two-color roof because it was in the process of getting a new one. You may be able to see one of the workers just visible on the roofline


  1. J'aime le travail de Van Gogh, sa manière à lui, particulière de traduire sa propre émotion en allant à l'essentiel et la simplicité...
    Beaucoup de pureté dans cette dernière peinture... Une lumière douce qui vous incite à la relaxation.
    Belle peinture...
    Gros bisous et merci pour votre gentil commentaire, comme à chaque fois.

  2. Van Gogh's church appears to be ready for launch because of the bottom. It isn't laying flat on the ground. He has it circular, much like you would draw the bottom of a rocket ship. It appears to be standing on it's outer tips. I like the lines in your painting and yes I can see the worker.

  3. Beautiful! Love how you suggested the windows.

  4. Beautiful painting! The worker on the roof is a lovely touch :)

  5. Thank you all very much.
    Martine, I understand why you love Van Gogh. You both have a wonderful way with saturated color.
    Susan, you are so right! Its bottom is circular and ready for launch!
    Karen, thank you. I kept at those windows until the perspective was okay and the shapes suggested rather than carefully delineated.
    Michelle, I so loved the guy on the roof; I had to include him.

  6. Love the looseness of the windows!

  7. Hi Shirley, Thanks for the feedback on my blog. Glad you found me! And yes, it is fabulous to communicate and not feel like you're conducting a monologue. Looking forward to seeing more of your wonderful work.

  8. This is a beautiful painting! I love the way you painted it, with your lush, loose strokes and impressionistic color. Really enjoyed visiting your blog.
    Really like your work! Congrats on the Higbee show.

  9. Thank you Pam, Giselle and Lorraine.

  10. hi shirley! your work is incredible! i love this blogging community because i'm led to so many creative blogs and so much amazing work!! thank you for visiting my blog and leaving such a wonderful comment. i'm so glad i visited, i love your work and became a follower. thanks again!

  11. Great overall tone. You can't beat a good white building painting.

    Great job!


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Pieces by (clockwise from left to right) : Susan Harlan, Janet Garner, Shirley Fachilla, Mike Martino and Topper Williams. So many ...