Anna Belleforte

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Orange is the new art form

Posted by Anna Belleforte on June 18, 2017 at 3:25 PM Comments comments (1)

Some nice news to come home to: I have won the Bronze prize in Art Ascent magazine‘s Orange issue, along with a featured article: (comments on their page welcome). Zuleika Murat wrote a nice piece on the work, which was from the recent Irrealities series.

I get a lot of feedback in person on my mixed media work. People are often surprised about what they see – they can’t figure out what they’re looking at, they tell me. Esp...

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at home, Amersfoort

Posted by Anna Belleforte on June 17, 2017 at 6:50 AM Comments comments (1)

The key is being alert to visual stimuli. The trip was confirmation that I am a studio artist above all else, but I do need observation of the outside world as a starting point, a place to come upon surprising things, to photograph ideas and garner real-world shapes, light, lines and contrasts. I feel more than ever that these need to be tools in building compositions that do not exist in reality. I’m drawn to how nature interacts with architecture, or how nature becomes a kind of archi...

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Fouquet's Chateau

Posted by Anna Belleforte on June 15, 2017 at 4:30 PM Comments comments (2)

A final tourist stop at Vaux-le-Vicomte, the precursor to Versailles, built by Louis XIV’s finance minister. I’m of two minds. The ridiculous opulence of it all. It’s what happens when someone has too much money, or rather, access to too much money since it was embezzled from taxpayers (for which he was fortunately jailed). But then, how amazing that creativity was funded and given free reign; architect, artist and landscaper working from scratch to create a kind of perfecti...

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Bourges and the Loire

Posted by Anna Belleforte on June 14, 2017 at 1:50 PM Comments comments (0)

France has a number of dead straight roads between, I would guess, once important trading cities. It’s thrilling to come to the top of a road like this and suddenly see before you something of perfect symmetry: the road stretching for miles over several hills, greens fading into blues and then the dip in the forest at the end which is the road slicing through. (Painting idea logged.)

Bourges was a surprise, in that its name is non-descript and recalls nothing of note (in my art h...

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Medieval villages

Posted by Anna Belleforte on June 13, 2017 at 12:45 AM Comments comments (1)

I’m back on N-roads and finding an excess of charm. First stop was Brantome, north of Perigueux, an abbey town with structures built into the cliff and, opposite the river, cute smiling pigs illustrated to advertise pork delicacies. This always rankles me a bit when, of course, their destiny here is anything but happy. The town attracts plenty of tourists. Many British, though perhaps they live here, as evidenced by the ‘So British’ fete next weekend. (I can’t imagine ...

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Dordogne and Perigord

Posted by Anna Belleforte on June 12, 2017 at 12:40 AM Comments comments (3)

Southwest France is full of extremely beautiful villages on rivers with huge stone churches and colourful shutters in disrepair. Today in St Astier there was a nice market - foods and antiques. I love perusing for old building tools, but for the most part it was lots of old junk from grandma’s attic I can’t imagine anyone wanting (and I love old things). But who’s to say? You can’t help but notice there are a lot of economically depressed French about. (Or is it a life...

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Basque country

Posted by Anna Belleforte on June 11, 2017 at 12:35 AM Comments comments (1)

I’ve seen many cyclists travelling with a teddy bear strapped onto their bikes and onto their tents when they've set up camp. Too many to be a coincidence. Anyone know what the significance is of this? I haven’t yet mustered the courage to ask these people, why are you travelling with a stuffed animal?

I had planned to spend more time in Spain, but after Portugal, Spain seems to have a different flavour. In Portugal I encountered friendly and efficient (a quality I appreciat...

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leaving Portugal

Posted by Anna Belleforte on June 6, 2017 at 1:30 PM Comments comments (2)

There’s something about Celine Dion’s greatest hits that make me cry ugly and feel good at the same time. So I was bawling my way across the border into Spain. I have the feeling I’m leaving Tully behind, and of course, I am. I was hoping to take lots of pictures of my dog in great scenery, you know the kind where he’s not aware he’s being photographed as he stares out to sea, or looks over his shoulder at some beautiful fountain, or indeed (as he often did) plon...

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Chaves near the northern border

Posted by Anna Belleforte on June 5, 2017 at 3:20 PM Comments comments (0)

Chaves is one of the most pleasant towns I’ve come across. It oozes ease. It’s a little disused around the edges, with empty grand hotels and ruinous river cottages. It seems to have had a heyday in the 1920s-30s. But it’s premier heyday was under the Romans. And it has a Roman bridge still in use, built by Trajan no less. (A moment to pause and awe.) There was enough wind over the bridge to throw your skirt up and your hat off (so composure was lost for some seconds). There...

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the stunning Douro

Posted by Anna Belleforte on June 4, 2017 at 4:25 PM Comments comments (2)

I felt like covering some kilometres today, and chose not to go into Coimbra, despite camping here overnight for the purpose. Felt a tad guilty, but I’m a bit citied-out at the moment. But also, I’m now saving parts for a future visit with A. Central Portugal is an area worth coming back to. The drive from Coimbra to Penacova was incredibly scenic, hugging green cliffs along a river with lots of Sunday rafters. Then I hit the magnificent landscape north of this and the Douro. The ...

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