LIFE IS FULL OF SURPRISES
First came corona, then came the closing of my exhibition and my paintings courses, and them came cancer.
Yes, the day after I posted the previous blogpost, I was diagnosed with cancer. And yes, it was a shock. I thought I was finished with cancer after my breast cancer 11 years ago, but no. It had hit me again. I was to have a rather large surgery, but luckily there was no spreading to other organs, so no need for radiation nor chemotherapy.
How did I feel? I felt numb, sad and bewildered. Is it really true, is it me this is happening to? I had problems taking it in. The surgery was set to just after Easter, and this was good, as I thought I would have to wait because of the corona pandemic. But we have this great health system in this country; when it is cancer, nobody should wait more than a few days to have a plan for the treatment. In my case I had to wait til after Easter. So the 16th of April I had the surgery, only one month (!) after the cancer was discovered. It could have been earlier if it weren’t for Easter holiday. And it went well. The surgeons were satisfied with the result. They had operated on me with the help of a surgery robot!
But the days before the surgery were long. I wanted it to be over with, but I had to wait. They were shortened a little by having CT and MR, etc. I would have wanted to do more good things, like going to galleries, a movie, etc, but everything was closed down because of the pandemic.
However, I had my studio in my own building, so that was my refuge those days. I made one stunt painting every day to express my feelings. Below you see some of them.
A couple of weeks after the surgery I was back in the studio. I felt like painting again, and one of my painting friends launched a challenge; abstracting a landscape. The landscape was nice and green, actually too much green to paint, in my opinion. But the challenge was nice. It turned out to be much harder than I thought. I found it so hard to remove myself from the original motif, so I did it my way. Below are the three versions I made. Acrylic on board, 30 x 30 cm.The first and red image, I deliberately changed the green fields into the complementary colour red, and built it from there, and I made some extra clouds with marks on the sky. On the second version, I went the other way and put the cold colours in front and the warm in the back. Still there is depth in the painting. In the third version I just chose different and desaturated colours. I think it pays to make many versions of the same motif.
I am glad I feel the need to paint, and that I also feel I have gathered a lot of strength during the last few weeks. I am enjoying these wonderful sunny, summer days as long as they last. And the coming week I will meet my students again and give them the painting days I had to cancel because of the corona.
Life goes on. Have a wonderful day!