The mountains in The Santi’s Workshop

The mountains as a motive was a discovery that came to me painting outdoors (plain air). By 1985 I went out for a walk with watercolors in the bag. I was looking for a light motif for my watercolors, light instruments.

There was a mass that ended up obsessing me as a motive. And I repeated it many times from different points of view. El Berrocal, next to Nombela, in Toledo. It’s not really big, but from the est side it shows foothills that especially appealed to me. And while painting his picture I imagined it from a bird’s eye view.

Curiously, this mountain was going through a debate about its suitability or not to be a “nuclear cemetery”, that is what the potential deposits of radioactive waste were called. Luckily, for the locals protesting against this decision, the option led to another location far further away.

Berrocal pointillist style 20x48 cm
The Berrocal pointillist style 20×48 cm

And this is what happens when you paint on the site and at the moment. Whether you like it or not, the reason makes the imagination shoot. A mental conversation begins with the motive. But brushes follow a method even though the brain goes faster than the hands.

The mountains in Cezanne’s painting

Since I discovered them I have always admired the Cezanne‘s “notes”. Cezanne was a landscape hunter. Pisarro infused him with a way to find the light that made him go around and around. Always looking for natural light, the “plain air”. And he found it, and really. Something similar to what happened to me happened to the mountains. Falling in love. His was with the mountain of Saint Victoire.

Several versions of the mountain of Saint Victoire by Cezanne
Several versions of the mountain of Saint Victoire by Cezanne

Mountain between the mountains was for Cezanne that of Sant Victoire. Wonderful and numerous landscapes around this motive came out of his brushes. Reason, the silhouette of this mountain, which I repeat, perhaps subconsciously or not, in some of its still lifes. Indeed, among the wrinkles of the tablecloths and cloths of some of their still lifes, the silhouette of the Saint Victoire mountain that he painted so much is repeatedly hinted.

The other mountains

Other mountains were put in front of me board on successive occasions. But they were not so sought after. Occasional encounters to be on the hiking trail. La Forqueta del Gavieto, Los Galayos, Monte Perdido, etc. But the panoramas made me reach the valleys. And the rivers run through the valleys, which also hooked me. And the trees are the stage and the characters of the natural.

Sierra de la Peña, Palencia, watercolor
Sierra de la Peña, Palencia, watercolor

And on the horizon line is where, I think, a dialectic is established between heaven and earth. It is where, following the topography of the land, merging in some cases, and contrasting and cutting in others, I find the old gods, Gea and Uranus, discussing their domains. Creating, in short, a free and random lifeline.

Veruela monastery with the Moncayo in the background, watercolor
Veruela monastery with the Moncayo in the background, watercolor
Trampantojo, "Panoramic of the Berrocal with simulated painted frame", oil on panel
Trampantojo, “Panoramic of the Berrocal with simulated painted frame”, oil on panel

2 thoughts on “The mountains in The Santi’s Workshop

  1. Me gustan las montañas, tanto como tú explicación, con ese sentimiento amoroso que veo en ella!!Otra buena lección….Gracias Santiago

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