Sunday, January 24, 2010

Finding Inspiration

Vivaldi’s Virgins
By Barbara Quick

At best, studio time has been sporadic over these last few weeks as my familial duties ebb and flow.  Although I don't have any worthy images to share with you, I thought that I could share with you a bit of unexpected inspiration.

I have been reading a most stimulating historical fiction by Barbara Quick titled "Vivaldi's Virgins".  I am addicted to art related fiction.  It's a genre in writing that easily sucks me in and keeps me up at night as I obsessively turn pages.  This story recreates for us 18th century Venice thru the eyes of a cloistered orphan and student of Vivaldi, the Red Priest.  Barbara Quick's style of writing immediately set my visual senses a flutter.   There are passages that had me weeping at the brilliance of the idea.  Here is a favorite:

"Are all lives such a complicated puzzle?  Maybe it's only in Venezia - in this place where everyone's role is so striclty and precisely defined - that the cracks between the puzzle pieces tell as much a story as the pieces themselves.  Each piece, seen in isolation, makes no sense at all - a corner of this, a limb of that; a leaf, a shadow, a section of water or sky.   The meaning only becomes clear when all the pieces are fitted together."

I also found an insightful review by Terez Rose that you may read HERE.

Have you found inspiration in writing before?  Do you have a favorite art related fiction to recommend?  I'd love to hear your thoughts.  Now, I must binge on Vivaldi's beautiful scores as I paint and draw.


  1. Dear Alia,

    Oh the Internet is a wonderful thing! Your blog post came to me this morning, courtesy of Google Alerts, which is set to mentions of my novel.

    I myself have derived so much inspiration from the world of visual art. My newest novel, A GOLDEN WEB, depended entirely on art and illuminations I was able to find from the 14th century. Art captures life (as I know you know!) in a way that history books never can.

    Anyway, I'm going to look at more of your paintings now. I found the collection featuring "Women Painting Women" (including yours) to be breathtakingly beautiful--and will pass it on to other artist friends of mine.

    Warmest wishes,

  2. a beautiful thought provoking quote from the book.
    sorry i don't have any recommendations of the type you asked about but i think most writers can't help but be artistic. r.

  3. Barbara- Thank you so much for taking the time to read and respond to my blog. It really means a lot that you've commented. I'm a bit speechless and star struck. I will look forward to the release of your next novel A Golden Web! Also, thank you for the praise of Women Painting Women. It's been a wonderful project to be a part of.

    Rahina, I'm glad you've enjoyed the quote. Try to get your hands on a copy of Vivaldi's Virgins as there are many more splended arrangements of words and thoughts inside.

    Happy painting, writing, being creative!