2009 Lake Worth Street Painting Festival, Florida
What an amazing weekend we had at the Lake Worth Festival this year! Celebrating it’s 15th year as south Florida’s premier street painting event, this festival is arguably the largest in the country, featuring over 280 artists this year and attracting approximately 100,000 attendees over 2 days.
The weather was perfect – sunny and partly cloudy skies, holding at about 70 degrees for both days. Artists began working mid day on Friday, Feb. 20, working through Saturday and Sunday to finish up the event late Sunday afternoon. This year I had the pleasure of being selected to work with a team of very talented artists from Florida – Jeanie Burns, Jane Portoluppi Durand and Carina Giacomelli – on a tribute painting honoring retiring festival directors Maryanne and Bruce Webber. The large painting would be centered on Jacques-Louis David’s iconic painting ‘Napoleon Crossing the Alps’, which currently hangs at Château de Malmaison, Rueil-Malmaison. Our street painting size would be 12′ high by 19′ long and required an additional compositional element (or two) to make the image work for the size of the piece.
I decided to recreate the painting as a larger version (not a far stretch since this painting already had 5 versions created between 1800 and 1803), with 2 additional cavalry soldiers, known as cuirassiers, for added drama.
The final element added to suggest the painting had just been removed from a museum and placed on the pavement was the addition of a large Neo-Classical frame, appropriate of the era. Not only was a realistic effect applied to imitate the appearance of an actual 3D frame resting on the pavement, but my cuirassier’s horse was seen to be reaching a leg out beyond the painting boundaries in an attempt to free itself, reminiscent of the first anamporphic ‘Napoleon Crossing the Alps’ painting I did a few years back at the ArtSplash Festival in Carlsbad, CA.
A great result from a great team, especially considering we had 2.5 days to complete this monumental piece! Thanks to Maryanne and Bruce Webber, Tom Ramiccio, and all the staff and volunteers at this year’s event – I am looking forward to continuing the tradition through the 20th anniversary in 2014!