Turn of The Year
Spirit of The Highlands Collection
Paul Taggart Masterworks
Oils on Gesso'd Wood Panel
Available for Private Purchase £18,500
This original Masterworks oil painting is exclusively available for purchase through Paul Taggart’s studio. If you are interested in discussing a possible purchase please click here to message us privately and we will be pleased to make contact to take it from there.
Frame Size (outer) 48cm[w] x 51cm[h]
FRAME - Hand-made by Frinton Frames. 100mm wide frame. Chelsea City – gesso covered moulding, with 23.75ct Gold Leaf banding, finished with an Antique wash finish. Inner slip-edge finished in cream.
“Welcome and thank you for dropping in to view our Limited-Edition Print, published from my original Masterworks oil painting, ‘Turn of The Year’. I am sure that I am not alone in being entranced by fireworks. Not only is their transitory beauty utterly fascinating for me - it is the effect that the smoke creates in terms of picking up the coloured light and the mysterious way it blankets objects, which captures my imagination as an artist.
SUBJECT - This is another conversation piece, as with ‘Lone Piper’, ‘Bonspiel 2009’, ‘Breaking Mists’. ‘Blazin’ Rehearsal’ - paintings that invite you to join in with the events portrayed, as if you were there in person. These paintings capture a moment in time, a happening, an event – formal or informal, family groups, or groups of friends, community gatherings and the like.
Some are never to be repeated, some have disappeared into the mists of time, some will trigger an emotional response or memory. This scene is of the traditional Hogmanay Celebrations in the Square of Dornoch, a town in Sutherland, Scotland, renowned for its golfing. This celebration could so easily have slipped into the distant memory, threatened as it was by the Covid 19 pandemic of 2020 and 2021 – but thankfully it lives on and hopefully will continue to do so for some time to come, for it represents a very Scottish celebration – the turn of the year.
COMPOSITION - The challenge was in making all of the intense, yet fleeting impressions of the fireworks hang together with the crowd and the setting, in this single composition. Whilst the cathedral and surrounding trees are brought into bright relief, illuminated by the fireworks and the Christmas lights; the foreground crowd acts as a counterfoil that enhances the richness of the background and draws the viewers eye towards the essence of the event. Although dark and seemingly a single mass, the crowd has structure and movement, as people turn to get a better view of the spectacle.
Look deeply into this crowd and you will see however that not everyone has their head turned away from us; there are individual groups of friends meeting and families gathered to welcome in the New Year, each telling of greetings exchanged, glasses being filled and toasts being made, as the old year passes and a new one begins.
METHOD - these Masterworks oil paintings are created using my unique method, a method based on traditional techniques, which are progressively worked through in layers from dark-to-light; a process that cannot be hurried, nor short-cuts taken. First, the underlying thinned colours of the underpainting, next the impasto stage, with glazes and tints used extensively to enrich and subtly enliven the oil painting – it is through these techniques where the ‘art of oil painting comes into its own.
Tints and glazes are the very essence of this painting, used extensively to portray the smoke-filled sky and smoke-shrouded crowd. The build-up of impasto strokes of paint ensures that the textural qualities of building, streetlights, figures, trees, architectural features and so on hold their own, providing the structure on which the entire composition is built. For without this structural texture, the subsequent application of tints and glazes would not work to imbue the painting with the richness and mysterious qualities it requires.
As always, we thank you for reading and watching, with best wishes from Eileen and myself,”
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