Monday, February 10, 2003

I prefer quiet when I'm painting, when totally absorbed in the work noise of any sort can be a distraction. The one exception is when decorating the house. Painting ceilings and walls is a chore which for me only becomes bearable if accompanied by Classic FM or Radio3.

Some artists work quite happily to musical accompaniment turning on the CD player in the studio before starting work. I remember on one visit to the Academia in Venice going into one of the galleries and noticeing a smell of linseed oil. Some heavy ornate wooden screens enclosed a space in a corner. Peeping through a gap I saw a young woman perched on a stepladder restoring the colour to the Virgin's cheeks in a huge painting of the Madonna and Child neistorarly 3m high. She had a small transistor radio tuned to a station playing pop music.

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