Painting in Southern France
Of all the places I have painted, France is still my
favorite. It is where I discovered art, when I was 21 and lived in Paris
for a year.
When I left Paris in 1973, I made a vow to myself that
I would return in a short time. But it would be nearly 20 years
(years of a law career and raising two children) before I returned. This
time - In 1992 - I brought with me the canvas, easel and paints of an
artist. I painted in Paris and in Provence where my sister and her family
I brought one of my sketches back to finish in my
art class at the University of Minnesota. The sketch was of Roman ruins,
not too far from my sister's house in Belcodene, with Mont St. Victoire in
The professor looked at the painting and said to me:
"Now, you have become an artist!"
In 1996 I spent a week with a group of artists in the
Luberon Valley of Provence. There I began to find my style of painting - a
style that I had been looking for during the past six years.
In 1997 I once again visited France, and spent a week
in Giverny, just a five-minute walk from Monet's house and gardens.
I was allowed to paint in Monet's gardens when they were closed to the
In 2000, and again in 2004, I spent time in an area of
France that I knew little about. It is located north of Toulouse and
west of Provence. I stayed in a magical place near Villefranche de