Thursday, April 16, 2009

Two Hundreds Years of Adobe Construction

"Capilla de San Antonio du Padua"
9x12, oil

While in Taos, we are staying in the La Loma Plaza Historic District. Our little casita, part of a building that was built in 1796, has a view of the Capilla de San Antonio du Padua. This little chapel was built at the same time as the Plaza and was used for worship by the inhabitants. It is still used today on special feast days.

Partly obstructing our view of the chapel is another old adobe, which is attached to ours. This adobe, which has been renovated without attention to aesthetics, together with the adjacent chapel, serves to illustrate 200 years of adobe construction.

Because of the high winds yesterday, I painted from the porch. I spent some time trying to get the best view of the chapel, but because of the narrow alleys between buildings - no wider than a single horse-cart or passenger car - it was impossible to paint the chapel and not include the other building.

I settled on what I felt was an interesting and "modern" composition. I could have done more to enhance the separation between the two buildings with, say, a figure or two, but I like the lack of spatial distance. I think the viewer's eye quickly moves out of this confusing area and up to the steeple of the chapel, which is the most beautiful part of the scene. I'm curious to know what you think.

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