Last weekend, with intentions of going to the National Book Festival, we headed for the mall. It took a mere glance at the crowd among the tents to know that getting into the thick of it would not be fun for our kids, so we detoured through the National Gallery of Art and ducked into the Arcimboldo exhibit.
I hadn't heard of Guiseppe Arcimboldo before, but his nature-inspired fantasy work was amazing. The sense of scale at the NGA is always a pleasure in and of itself. They had built an over-sized model of the 'winter' version of his 'four seasons' series. The model of course being of more interest to the kids than the oil painting on which it's based.
As I often find, I enjoyed the artist's studies best: pencil sketches, and quick details of animal and plant species he used to learn about the natural world before creating his "mad" interpretations. Something about the authenticity and a seed of interest within those early conceptual works appeals to me.
His work seems fitting for the coming season of carving gourds into faces and telling of creepy, other-worldly stories. I hadn't thought of it that hot, humid afternoon, but I do believe Arcimboldo is a great segue into October. I'm sipping warm apple cider this rainy morning. Our mums are beginning to blossom and I've bought a pumpkin. Things are feeling pretty autumnally festive around here.