Monday, May 18, 2009

The Casino at Marino- Ireland

This jewel box of a garden pavilion was designed by the great British architect Sir William Chambers for James Caulfield, 1st Earl of Charlemont. It was begun in the late 1750's and was finished around 1775. It is considered one of the finest examples of neoclassical architecture of the period.

Despite it's relatively small size from the outside the interior contains sixteen rooms on three separate floors. Chambers ingeniously arranged the rooms to maximize the Greek cross form of the building. The exteriors are richly adorned with a large assortment of egg and dart moldings, carved swags, triglyphs, metopes, and rusticated stonework. The most wonderful carved elements include the lion sphinxes that guard the pavilion at the corners, the carved figures above the cornices and the delightful urns that double as chimneys. The perfectly proportioned Doric columns also disguise downspouts from the roof.

The unusual name "Casino at Marino" translates from the Italian words Casino (small house) and Marino (small sea)-Small House by the Sea. Charming isnt it?

In choosing the color palette and the materials my inspiration was to paint it in traditional monochrome grey ink washes in the style of the Ecole des Beaux Arts. I felt that the strong neoclassical style of the building would look best using this method.

I have used black india ink for the painting, which eliminates the need for color mixing. As you can see there are various shades of grey in the painting from light to dark. In all I have used four shades of grey; light, medium, medium dark, and dark. These shades are achieved by how much water you add to your pigment. For the lightest wash I use a large ratio of water to ink. As I go darker additional ink is added to my pan. The india ink is highly concentrated so a little goes a long way making it an economical choice for my paintings. Plus I love the strong contrasts between the lights and darks.

Sorry to all for the long lapse of time since my past post but I hope you all enjoy my latest work.


The Peak of Chic said...

Glad you're back posting. Wow! Great job. Love the gray tones.

Jackie Von Tobel said...

Beautiful!!! Are you going to sell limited edition prints? You should.

La Maison Fou said...

I just did a post on architectural watercolors last week, yours I believe? perhaps

Anonymous said...

I had the pleasure of a tour of this little gem. originally a visual folly to be seen from the long gone main house ,now set in a uninspired area of Dublin, with just the barest of park land surrounding it. This building is an exquisitely well designed creation and I highly recommend anyone interested to make the time to visit this building.