Sunday, August 9, 2015

First Iceland painting completed

Lambhagi--click on image to see the whole painting.
oil, aspen bark, and paper on panel
36 x 80 inches
New painting, inspired by my travels in Iceland. A lambhagi is a pen where newborn lambs were isolated from their mothers before the practice went out of fashion. It's also the name of a place on the trail to Skaftafell waterfall in Vatnajokull National Park that left an impression on me.
Icelanders cut down almost all of their trees centuries ago and are now trying to reforest. The hike to Skaftafell wound through a beautiful forest. In a small lambhagi in that birch and willow forest stood the biggest birch tree I'd seen in Iceland. An amazing beauty. A closer look revealed that it had been newly girdled by some axe-wielding lunatic and was dying. It broke my heart; such a beautiful place and such depths of human ignorance.