Following Alberti’s path in 2014

Becoming better artists onpaintingaccording to Alberti

2014, a new year arrives with our usual list of personal and professional goals to be accomplished. On our side, we are getting ready for our annual art trip to New York City and our art workshops in Tuscany, and in Provence.

We, artists, are always wondering about possible new themes and techniques and often questioning about the worthiness of our ideas. As we always teach during our painting workshops in Italy, the classical text Della Pittura by Leo Battista Alberti (1404 -1474) still remains valid and can be very useful in our artistic quest. This extraordinay book is still in publication by the English title On painting.

This New Year, let’s try to be a better artists according to Alberti’s convictions for whom being an artist is to be a good person, generous, concerned about others; who works with thoughtfulness and fervour, being diligent. In addition, he knows about literature and liberal arts (grammar, dialectics, rhetoric, music, arithmetic, geometry and astronomy). He practises the study of nature, for he knows the names of trees, plants, the effects of light on the water, mountains, in brief, he is sensitive to his natural environment; he looks well and he is able to imitate what he sees.

An artist is always in the quest of beauty, and the beautiful is located, among others, in nature, in fair proportions of painted figures and things and the accurate extension of reality in a pictorial frame through basic perspective. A painting is just like an “open window into the world”.

This being said, as visual artists today, we need to be good, educated, know about what is going on in the world, sensitive to our environment. We should know how to imitate what we see,  know how to represent what is in front of us, with the traditional tools (paint, pencil, charcoal, etc.) or with contemporary tools such as the computer.

We wish you all a great New Year 2014 full of creativity, rewarding experiences and creative projects, health, joy and peace.

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