Plein air drawing of a village near A Suphan
A Süphan on Lake Van Framed Print
A Suphan for Celal -©2016 TriciVenola— Project patron Celal Ögmen grew up in this village a few decades ago. He came to Istanbul as a teenager. He stood outside a prosperous fish restaurant in Kumkapi: Kalamar, saying in to the tourists in all their languages, “Come here and eat fish.” Now he owns the restaurant and the one next door, educates his daughter in New York, is a cornerstone of local industry and a patron of the arts. One brother is a judge, the other a barrister in New York. You can do anything with brains and moxie.
A Suphan for Celal -©2016 TriciVenola— Project patron Celal Ögmen grew up in this village a few decades ago. He came to Istanbul as a teenager. He...
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Plein air drawing of ancient carving of Adam and Eve at Aghtamar
Adam and Eve at Aghtamar Framed Print
2016 Adam & Eve at Holy Cross Aghtamar Island Lake Van 915-921 CE -©2016 TriciVenola — This last date refers to when they were carved. Note that Adam and Eve were carved sans genitalia. Despite damage by vandals, both still have curiously benign expressions. Down in the lower right corner is a an eviscerated female figure. The vandals left the snake alone, perhaps for professional courtesy.
2016 Adam & Eve at Holy Cross Aghtamar Island Lake Van 915-921 CE -©2016 TriciVenola — This last date refers to when they were carved. Note tha...
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Alexander Rides to Midas Framed Print
-Bes, protector against evil-Roman copy from Cyprus -Hittite Lion 6C BCE -ALEXANDER -Midas tomb bracelets -pitcher -Phrygia 740 BCE -Alexander rides from Hittite lions across the ancient gods & griffins to Midas gold at the Archeological Museum ©TriciVenola 2012
-Bes, protector against evil-Roman copy from Cyprus -Hittite Lion 6C BCE -ALEXANDER -Midas tomb bracelets -pitcher -Phrygia 740 BCE -Alexander rides f...
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Plein air drawing of Artos Mountain with trees
Artos Mountain and Kavak Trees Framed Print
Artos Mountain -Kavak Trees -Waiting for the ferry to Akdamar -Snow-streaked mountains behind thrilling sheaves of poplar trees  -And then the pale sheet of the sea... a common sight around here. 3 May -©2016 TriciVenola — All over Van are these stands of white poplars with the white-streaked mountains behind. The lake is so vast it looks like a sea. As I drew this, the man in the picture walked up and down the rows, planting his field. I was waiting for the only boat to Aghtamar. Since there was no tourism, there were no boats, but I lucked out: a large Turkish family had booked one, and they invited me to come along.
Artos Mountain -Kavak Trees -Waiting for the ferry to Akdamar -Snow-streaked mountains behind thrilling sheaves of poplar trees  -And t...
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Aspects of Love Framed Print
-Crossed Augustus - Ivory talking stick actual size- Dionysius -Actual size desiccated Apostle-like ivory from wall frieze 2ndCentury Roman -Eros -Selçuk Museum last day. August 2012 -Very famous stone Priapus; actual size from Ephesus, in its own case with a pushbutton light. I had to keep pushing it, and the entire ROOM gathered.  ©TriciVenola 2012
-Crossed Augustus - Ivory talking stick actual size- Dionysius -Actual size desiccated Apostle-like ivory from wall frieze 2ndCentury Roman -Eros -Sel...
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Plein air drawing of ancient carving of bible stories at Aghtamar
Bible Stories in Stone Framed Print

Bible Stories in Stone ©TriciVenola 2016

Few could read, so these figures proclaimed the Holy Word to all who looked on them. Absolute delight carved in red tufa, these figures are about 3/4 life-size and protrude about 4 inches from the stone blocks from which they are carved. One pictures the cartoons on paper or canvas fixed to the surface of blocks that stick out farther than those above and below. They would have covered the back of the canvas with pigment and traced the drawings from the front. And then up on ladders, hacking and then tapping away, finalizing with passion and skill, patiently creating the vivid images in the tedious medium. Armenian art is all based on circles. Its testimony to the expertise of the artists that these figures carved on stone blocks are all so curvilinear. And those borders!

Bible Stories in Stone ©TriciVenola 2016 Few could read, so these figures proclaimed the Holy Word to all who looked on them. Absolute delight carv...
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Plein air drawing of the Big Boukoleon Arch
Big Boukoleon Arch Framed Print
BIG BOUKOLEON ARCH ©2011 by Trici Venola. This fabulous old arch looks about ready to collapse, which is why we preserved it here. Every brick is accurate, just as they were fitted together in the ninth century when this palace was built. Once rising grandly out of the sea, it now fronts on a highway. Burned by Crusaders in 1204 and truncated by the Sultan in 1871 to make room for the Orient Express Railroad, this grizzled survivor is still beautiful. Up top, weather has desiccated the remains of a window into the shape of a lion, an echo of the ones that used to stand on its vanished balconies. Those are in the nearby Archeological Museum. This one is now more appropriate. Drawn in full searing sunlight with ants crawling on me, cats slumbrous in the afternoons, during 30 hours in July, and well worth it. During the long sessions, the whoosh of cars on the highway behind me took on the sound of the waves. 35 x 70 cm, drafting pens on rag paper, this drawing was commissioned by Donna Perkins of the Boreal Forest in Alberta.
BIG BOUKOLEON ARCH ©2011 by Trici Venola. This fabulous old arch looks about ready to collapse, which is why we preserved it here. Every brick is acc...
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Big Faces Agape Framed Print
-Vize Tumulus -Bronze -Roman Period -Kirklareli 1st C BC -Tykhe Goddess of Destiny -2ndC AD -Bronze bust of Aelia Eudocia: early 5thC AD -Marble satyr mask 2ndC AD Bithynia -Terracotta 1-2C AD -Bronze bulls 1C AD Thrace -Male Bronze stand Claudiopolis (Bolu) 1C AD -Big Faces Agape at the Archeological Museum A favorite drawing. The bust of Empress Eudocia at center is a weight for measuring goods. She was the much-loved Empress of Theodosius II.
-Vize Tumulus -Bronze -Roman Period -Kirklareli 1st C BC -Tykhe Goddess of Destiny -2ndC AD -Bronze bust of Aelia Eudocia: early 5thC AD -Marble satyr...
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Plein air drawing of portals at the Boukoleon Palace
Boukoleon Portals Framed Print
BOUKOLEON PORTALS © 2011 by Trici Venola. This magnificent 9th-century Byzantine Palace once rose out of the Marmara Sea, part of the city walls of Istanbul when it was Constantinople. It was faced with brilliantly colored marble and embellished with statues. Burned by Crusaders in 1204, the Palace structure was occupied anyway by the local populace, until it was dynamited in 1871 to build the Orient Express Railway. Later, around 1962, the city filled in the harbor and built the highway. This scrim, The Big Arch, a pillar colonnade and some piles of brickwork are all that remain. They still have an awesome presence. This drawing took 40 hours. It’s 35 x 70 cm, done with drafting pens on rag paper, commissioned by Donna Perkins of the Boreal Forest in Alberta, a lady as interested as I am in documenting these vanishing foundations of Western culture.
BOUKOLEON PORTALS © 2011 by Trici Venola. This magnificent 9th-century Byzantine Palace once rose out of the Marmara Sea, part of the city walls of I...
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Plein air drawing of ancient carving of bunnies griffins and bears at Aghtamar
BUNNIES & GRIFFINS & BEARS OH MY! Framed Print
-©2016 TriciVenola A shot-up saint over a zoological stack of fabulous creatures, with two happy bunnies in the centre. The rabbits are indigenous to Aghtamar Island, and to many other islands nearby. Most of them are black, a hallucinatory hippity-hop among the rocks and seagulls. Torn-up celery and lettuce for the bunnies line the tourist walkways. Centuries of monks must have dined on these rabbits, worn their fur and probably made pets of them as well. They are accompanied by white goats and gulls.
-©2016 TriciVenola A shot-up saint over a zoological stack of fabulous creatures, with two happy bunnies in the centre. The rabbits are indigenous...
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Chairs at Priene Framed Print
-Priene -Wind in the pines- Lion-footed chairs- Thick slick patina enamels the heavy solid marble- so familiar & right- 24 August 2012 ©TriciVenola 2012 The ancient Greek theater at Priene is overgrown with pine trees, which horrifies archeologists. I find it charming. There are five massive marble chairs around the stage at center. They are right at the edge and there is no blood screen. This means that the theater is intact from ancient Greek times, before the Romans and their blood sports. Alexander the Great paid for this theater. Did he sit here? Many tourists have, which is the reason for the thick enamel-like patina, all from the last hundred years.
-Priene -Wind in the pines- Lion-footed chairs- Thick slick patina enamels the heavy solid marble- so familiar & right- 24 August 2012 ©TriciVeno...
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Column in Priene Framed Print
Spirits are sleeping, but they dream of now. ©TriciVenola 2012 Two hours in scorching heat, drawing this column from the Temple of Athena Polias, dedicated in 334 by Alexander the Great in Priene, a city high on a hill over a grassland that once was the harbor. Realized with horror that I’d left out one of the two small sections at the top. It drove me crazy. A friend said, “Trici, nobody in this life will ever notice that,” but-Damn! So I went in digitally and fixed it.
Spirits are sleeping, but they dream of now. ©TriciVenola 2012 Two hours in scorching heat, drawing this column from the Temple of Athena Pol...
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