The Painting

01 Jun

When my mother came to visit for 10 days after my stepfather died, I told her I was going to hook her up when it came to design.

There were many items that she and Al did not agree on in terms of how to decorate. So they compromised. But now she has a chance to do something fun like redecorate the living room to something she likes.

So for years, I’ve had a very famous painting in storage. When I was in my early 30s I went through this period where I owned a huge house on a big piece of property and I filled every inch of that house.

The painting was one of The Singing Butler series oil-on-canvasĀ paintingĀ made by Scottish artist Jack Vettriano in 1992. He never intended for the copy I had to be sold. He slashed the corner and marked it not for sale. Somehow the painting came up at an auction I attended. I bought the painting and fixed the canvas and finished the oil painting repair. For years it hung in my house in a two story vaulted entry way. The painting is quite large. I was doing a project at the time where I was teaching a graduate course for Northeastern University and my students were redesigning the Ballroom Dance web site for M.I.T. So I bought the painting during that time.

This is an image of the painting that you are probably most familiar with, “The Singing Butler.” My painting did not have the maid. It has the butler, the dancers in the far distance a small sailboat.

So I loaded my mother up with all the yellow, green and canvas toss pillows that used to adorn my sofa. The colors tie in perfectly to the version of the painting that I had. I recommended that she purchase neutral canvas slipcovers for her sofa, hang the painting in the living room and bring out the accent colors. She’s also going to incorporate some new lampshades that I had that tied it all together.

I can’t wait to see how it turns out in her house. I did a masterful job of repairing the painting. You would never know to look at it today that it had damage.

She went home with a complete car full – painting, decorating items and bags and bags of my clothes that I don’t want or need anymore. She’s small enough now to fit in them. I sent her home with towels, accessories, purses and jewelry. Years ago I took a trip to Puerto Rico and I brought back an 18 karat gold garnet and diamond ring and a necklace made from a coin. I sent her back with those and a whole bag of earrings, rings, etc.

My thought philosophy these days is that if I haven’t worn it in years then it needs to go anyway. There are only certain colors that I like and I tend to wear everything with those colors.

I told her, “I know how to hook you up.” And I did.

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