Framed 24" x 18" Limited Edition Giclee Print, 2011 (Age 15)
When my family came back to Canada from Russia (where I was born and lived for the early years of my life) we moved into a house in Burlington, Ontario on the property of CAMA Woodlands Nursing Home. The house and gardens used to be part of that, but had been neglected for many years. So we set out to recover the old gazebo and surrounding flowerbeds. When my mother started cutting back a gigantic circular hedge, my brother and I found an entryway to the inside, where we discovered an old forgotten fountain! The little boy on the fish had toppled over, but we were delighted at our discovery. My mom trimmed the hedge way down so it could be seen, and my dad helped us put it back together and clean it up. For Mother’s Day we refurbished it and put in a pump from my grandpa’s old fish tank so the fountain would work. My mom was thrilled, and we all enjoyed it so much that we hauled it to the house we moved to in Stoney Creek a few years ago, and I can see it from my studio gallery windows. In the Fall, I took photos of it with the fallen peach tree leaves and murky water. The photos had two Blue Jays in them, but I later took more with House Sparrows, which are a common everyday sight. After 200 hours of painting it from August to October (see my time lapse video on YouTube), the water once again looked green and the peach tree leaves had fallen into it just like the year before. The sparrows that use it as their birdbath are humble, sometimes forgotten birds just like this fountain was, but I wanted to celebrate both of them in this painting. I liked the baroque revival style of the fountain and the challenge of this work, as it incorporated a statue of a human figure, perspective of roughly circular clamshells, water with reflections, and colourful cast shadows creating interesting shapes.