MINIPRINT CANTABRIA COMPETITION 2021
Contemplate the flamboyance of breton summer evenings, remembering with affection early twentieth century art, so fertile and evocative...
This print is submitted to the “International Miniprint Cantabria” competition; its theme is “the sea and the lighthouses” and the requirement is to make a works of art in a printed form. The exhibition of the hundreds of works submitted by participants all around the world is held from 1st September to 31st December in Santander in Spain.
Et le soleil mourant, sur un ciel riche et sombre
The subject: the “phare du Paon”, the lighthouse at the far end of the Bréhat island in Brittany was erected in 1855 and rebuilt as it was before in1948. On the occasion of a short stay, I sketched it (in the rain) and took many pictures while walking past.
The colour palette: I chose to evoque the moment when the moor and the sky are lit by the last rays of the sun just before twilight, just when the headlight is about to reveal its usefulness. From afar, the sea seems perfectly calm but this is a misleading impression : in this sublime landscape,the rocks are skimming the surface and represent a very frightening threat.
To express this feeling, I found inspiration in one of Felix Vallotton’s colour palettes. He is a painter and printmaker whom I greatly admire (1865 - 1925). I was especially drawn to the colours of his “soir antique” painting.
The title of the print: its title is from a verse of the poem José-Maria de Heredia (1842 - 1905) Soleil couchant: Et le soleil mourant, sur un ciel riche et sombre. This poem is included in the book “les Trophées” (1893) in which there are 118 sonnets. It’s part of the section "La nature et le rêve" (the nature and the dream) and more precisely in the subsection "La mer en Bretagne" (the sea in Brittany).
You can listen to this poem in a very beautiful reading on the music Gymnopédie n°1 of Erik Satie (1866 - 1925) by clicking on this link . Other readings chose not to pronounce the letter t ending the word “granit'' so as to respect the rhymes of this sonnet. You might like to listen to this reading.
If you would like to see some pictures of the making of this print, please click on this link to access athe blog post I wrote about it. I combined two (jigsaw) blocks; the second one being a reduction print so as to add the shadows of the architecture of the lighthouse and some details of the rocks.
This print is available in my e-shop: click here if you would like to see it.