Sunday, February 03, 2008

Vissi D'Arte, Vissi D'Amore

This is not a new painting. I painted this when Tom and I were still living in New York City, about 15 years ago. We lived in our 500 sq. ft. studio then; I did this painting standing in the kitchen. Tom was occupying the middle of the studio working on a still life and he was taking forever with it. For a few weeks I fiddled with landscapes in a corner while I waited...finally I decided to just paint him painting.
I am glad I did: this is one of my favorite paintings and one of the few we have kept over the years. I gave it to him on our tenth wedding anniversary, a few months after we moved to Vermont, in memory of our first decade togther in our little studio.
We both love opera and Tom is particularly fond of Tosca (I think because the hero is a painter). In the middle of the opera the soprano sings a great aria "Vissi D'Arte, Vissi D'Amore" which means, roughly, "I lived for art, I lived for love" For years I told Tom I was going to put that on his tombstone. One Sunday afternoon in Vermont I went for a long walk; when I came home opera was blaring from the studio. I peeked in, only to see Tom, up on a ladder, lettering a beam with the motto "Vissi D'Arte, Vissi D'Amore".
He has his own blog now, Dammi i colori (guess what opera that is from), the link is on the left, check it out.

1 comment: said...

That's cool thing. We do the same with my boyfriend. He usually draws me while I'm drawing something else.