© Stephen Eastaugh, 2018. All Rights Reserved.
I begin to get itchy feet now. Actually I always have itchy feet but sometimes it is more intense than at other times. It has now been over 6 months that I have been in Argentina without moving from La Consulta! The mountains are still majestic, the meat and wine are still excellent and the house we live in is very cosy but I keep thinking about movement not because I am unhappy, lonely or because I am feeling constricted. It is just habitual, an addictive desire of mine to move and then move again and to keep moving. I quip that it is more difficult to hit a moving target so best to keep moving. A similar gypsy bug has also bitten Carolina so I am not alone in my restfulness although I doubt if she feels the constant fidgety wanderlust that streams through my blood like a designer drug manufactured to keep people jolly and continually on the move. “Movement is good, stillness is bad, movement is good, stillness is bad, look deep into my eyes and repeat these words.” I have managed quite successfully to hypnotize myself with such a chant for many kilometres over a long period of time.
We did have a plan some weeks back to travel to Paraguay for a brief holiday but this was aborted due to work and various deadlines so now out the window I watch the arrival of winter to La Consulta, slowly but surely the leaves change colour and drop, frost arrives some morning and the world spins.
In the studio I am working on a whole batch of small drawings. Watercolour, acrylic paint and wax pencil on damaged paper are the tools I use while the topic is surprisingly domestic - Houses and Gardens. Yes my drawings are just like those images found in shiny magazines scattered on millions of coffee tables around the world. Actually I lie, as they are nothing like those magazine images but the topics are exactly the same - vegetation and shelter. I also cultivate some work dealing with weeds for future exhibitions. So I am busy planting a few ideas and germinating feelings to see what sprouts up.
It has also been a month of Australian visitors to La Consulta. Sudha, Kate, Ben, Dave and my half sister Claire who now lives below a large sign that says Hollywood in the northern bit of America. Therefore a great many drinks have been drunk during long asado-bbq afternoons the past weeks. Lets call it wine tasting. I was fortunately able to continue working in the studio while playing the role of the lazy host but now I must adapt to my new role as fire-wood chopper as most nights now drop to around zero Celsius and our open fire is looking more and more hungry.
To appease my travel bug but more to give Carolina a much-needed break from Bodega work we went to the capital for 4 days. A restaurant or two, an art fair (just like all those other art fairs across the globe), friends to catch up with and strolls about the impressive but somewhat messy “Paris of the south.”
On the final night we strolled about San Telmo and heard a great Uruguayan street percussion band in a small park. This music was more to my taste than the modern tango to be found in Buenos Aires. I currently listen to Mongolian punk music and dance like an ancient and tipsy Indonesian grandmother so best not to take too much notice of my musical critiques.