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June Carey - Cercina Above Careggi -  LIMITED EDITION CANVAS Published by the Greenwich Workshop


          Cercina Above Careggi
by June Carey

Original Retail Price $595.00

LIMITED EDITION CANVAS
Limited Edition of: 100
Image Size: 28"w x 19"h.
Published: September 2009







“The full name of the little church is Pieve di Sant 'Andrea a Cercina. It is in the community of Sesto Fiorentino, just outside of Florence, Italy,” says June Carey. “To get there, I drove through the tiny village of Serpiolle. The stone walls close in on the street so that cars are expected to honk on the blind corners before going into them. If you are lucky, there is room for one small car. Once through the town, at a deserted intersection was this church with its walled cemetery. Nearby, I saw this woman gathering greens from the field for dinner that night. She is my favorite part of the scene. I try to imagine myself getting older and living the life that she must live there. I would, however, probably be better at painting the scene than living it.

"I returned another time and the place looked deserted. The door was open and I went inside with my camera, thinking to grab a few photos. There was a very heavy scent of white lilies and in the dim light, across the barren interior courtyard I saw a table, where the lilies were in a large vase. I snapped one photo and was ready to fire the next, when suddenly, from a small doorway I didn't know existed, a nun appeared, speaking rapidly and waving a bony finger at me. Although I had no idea what she said, I knew she did not want me to take photos! So much for my love affair with the inside of old churches, I guess one should never assume a place is deserted in Italy.”




June Carey
Born in Maryland, the first 11 years of my life were spent in Maryland, Virginia, and Pennsylvania’s beautiful Amish farm country. Ours was a home always alive with the sounds of singing, laughter, and a love for the arts. My father was a voice instructor, and there was a steady flow of eccentric, artistic, and interesting larger- than- life-characters, as my father’s greatest passion was the Italian opera, and all its drama. But I was NOT a performer! And while the rich, and tragic melodic theme from Aida seemed to always play in the background of my heart, and life, I found myself in search of a quiet reality, where no one could make me forget who I was or why. The real-life opera of my family life was a drastic contrast to the truthful beauty of the tranquil land, where I could breathe in the life of the things that flourished under the warming sun. I remember vividly, when I was 5, losing myself, in the turquoise twilight magic of a summer evening, taken in by the breath of sweet fields of winter wheat, beneath the rising sliver of a moon. Here I felt I found myself, my love, my truth. While the melodramatic voices loudly echoed from our little farmhouse, I escaped into the quiet roar of the singing crickets, and the song of the meadowlark, and here I felt, was a place that was mine. As my life changed, my parents divorced, and we moved away, I always longed for my beautiful Pennsylvania fields, where everything was the way it should be.

I can’t explain why I feel such passion for the beauty of the fertile earth, but these things have been my real teachers. Through colorful, and crazy years of growing up, from the Eastern seaboard, through the hills of the Ozarks, to California, where I arrived at 19, the sun never fades, and the power of the earth causes brave little plants to push themselves into the light, even in the middle of a busy LA freeway! These things make me happy and so, I have gone in search of the scenes where I feel the reality rich with the breath of growing things, and the essence of life, itself, as the way the world needs to be for human beings to grow and thrive.

I began painting full time in 1982, starting from the literal sidewalk, I did my time as a starving artist, with a young son to raise from a first marriage. But, there came a time when I was happy to leave the tragic artist vision behind, for the happy success of sell-out gallery shows, in Carmel California and award banquets in Jackson, WY at the Arts for the Parks where I won the Region II Award twice. In 1991 I married late historical maritime artist David Thimgan, and for the next 13 years we thrived and grew together, running with our cameras up and down the N. coast, trying to capture the California light we both loved. It was on one of these impulsive escapes to the Mendocino coast, as we traveled through the back roads, that I discovered the California wine country, in the all the glory of a late summer afternoon light. I was so happy to have found a place in California that reminded me of my long, lost fields of Pennsylvania, where green things thrived, under the care of humans. I painted my first Vineyard scene in 1996, and as time passed, all this has taken me to the countryside of Tuscany, where I feel I probably lived in a former lifetime. My Italian opera theme song has never left my heart, and somehow, life seems to have come full circle, to connect, again, the passions of my life.

 

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