Gunning resident and internationally recognised artist Margarita Georgiadis was one of eight artists chosen worldwide to undertake a once only offered artist’s two week residency in France. Here are her reflections.
“The residency was an hour south of Paris in Héricy Sur Seine, a small village by the River Seine. The property overlooking the river was once owned by Etienne Dinet’s family, a 17th century French Orientalist painter. I worked in what was his first studio before he left France to live in the Middle East for the rest of his professional life.
I have never in my life witnessed so much green in the landscape. I was immersed in forever lush, juicy green – a green world. It was a jolt and visual shock to my Australian senses and a challenge to paint and draw the essence of this landscape. My studio overlooked the river, so naturally my paintings have been inspired by that stunning, tranquil and ever changing view.
I spent some time exploring Paris. Having never traveled to France before, this was my first experience of the city. I fell in love. I fell in love with the Parisian architecture, the history, culture, the majesty and grandeur of monuments, the never-ending streets. Streets with skewed vanishing points, luring me toward seemingly endless adjoining streets. Ancient sky scrapers towered over this incredibly beautiful city – a city of art and architecture.
The contrast between the countryside and the city was extreme. The experience was unforgettable and incredibly inspiring. I feel I have since painted not one but two bodies of work for exhibition – Paris and Héricy Sur Seine. Since returning I have produced over 50 paintings and studies and over 40 works on paper in three months with still more to paint.
I am still inspired by my time in France, made possible by a Veolia Mulwaree Art Scholarship and a self-initiated crowd funding campaign. Artists, collectors, friends and family generously supported and followed my trip to France, receiving an artwork for a pledge. I will forever be grateful for the encouragement and belief in my artistic quest and adventure received from so many kind and generous people.”
An exhibition of the artist’s work “Paris á L’Atelier Sur Seine” will show from October 12-30 at Rex-Livingston Art & Objects in Katoomba with possible selected works to show later at Goulburn Regional Art Gallery.