My graphite pencil drawings Het Sterrenbos – 12-09-22 and Clingendael – 31-08-22 belong together. The latter is made on that very day, the first completed today. In the art statement to the Clingendael drawing I mentioned my friend Michelle. We agreed to do some live drawing there. However, she also wanted me to show a spot in Het Sterrenbos (Forest of the Stars) most dear to her. It’s a special section in the estate, consisting of man-sized hedges of rhododendrons. The famous Japanese garden is there and the forest itself is traversed by a star-shape pattern of paths. Hence the name Sterrenbos (radiant star patterns).
The actual spot is almost in the middle of the forest and consist of a single thin young tree. Not much to see at first sight. What makes it special is that this tree is planted in memory of her younger brother Mark. Part of his ashes was scattered here. So what’s left of him is in the tree now. Of course that’s the physical. All other remnants are dear memories, embedded in her, her family and friends. I never knew him myself but she told me stories of his talents, creativity and his lust for life. Too bad that the good seems to die so young. No one know why some grow cancer living healthy, while so many others don’t. The answer is blowing in the wind.
We were lucky when we got there. The sun broke through the thick foliage and his spirit seemed to shin upon her and the tree. That’s when I took the reference photo for this drawing. I knew exactly what to do with it. But that was before I made two other drawings in between. First came the Fabulous Burki, Lippe and Wassenaar Trio – 02-09-22 and secondly Art Deco Nude – 05-09-22 (sold). By the time I finished the latter I was into impressionism and realism again. I drew this one in a similar style as Clingendael – 31-08-22 so the drawings would become inseparably entwined. The most challenging part was to only indicate the leaves in the background. What I did basically was to only erase them back loosely with my Derwent electrical eraser. A lot of tooth brush noise whilst completing this one.
Pitt Graphite Matt pencil (Faber-Castell) drawing on Hahnenmühle paper (24 x 31 x 0.1 cm)
Artist: Corné Akkers