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Saturday, March 26, 2011

"The Dragon of Sant'Elia"

I painted this dragon in about 1978. It's probably the largest canvas I've ever done. Through a number of moves and lack of care, it is gone now, but I photographed it before it disappeared. I'm guessing it was about five feet tall. The dragon, the street sign, and the doorway come from a photo I took of the Town Hall (Rathaus) in Munich. I would have to hunt for that photo, so I'll link to photos that someone else put online. Here is one of the dragon sculpture, and here is one showing the dragon showing more of the Rathaus.

I didn't like the way the painting was going when I tried to paint it to look like the original building and sculpture, so I changed the color of the dragon and obliterated the setting except for the street sign. So, what to use for a background? I took the design from a drawing of by Antonio Sant'Elia for building in the Futurist style. Somewhat modified, but not much, I thought it was the perfect setting for my dragon. Although realistic street sign was now totally out of place, I liked the balance and couldn't think of anything I'd prefer to put there, so I left it. It's the tail end of "Weinstrasse" with a German double "s."

Since the sign has a story behind it, I thought I'd link with "Signs, Signs" today.

This blog is sponsored by Tapir and Friends Animal Store.


Francisca said...

WOW, Sheryl, this is super cool! I think this is the first of your art works I've seen you post, isn't it? It must be a heartache to have lost the original painting, though. What a fascinating subject you chose, this dragon on the M√ľnchen Town Hall.

Lesley said...

This is cool, your very own sign. I like dragons and I like how you altered it to make it work for you.

tapirgal said...

Hi Francisca,

Thanks for your thoughts, but I don't keep that much of an attachment to my artwork once it's done. I do keep most of it around, and I like to have photos of it, but once it was falling apart and ready for the trash, it was only a small tug on the emotions to see it go.

tapirgal said...

P.S. I'm not all stoic. If I hadn't had the photo, it would have been hard!