David L Carpanini (1946 - )

Charcoal on paper


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© David L Carpanini

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  • About the work
    Country: UK
    City: London
    Place: Wales Office, Gwydyr House, Whitehall
    Snowdon is one of two charcoal drawings by David Carpanini in the Government Art Collection (The Craig GAC 11011 is the second). Both represent Welsh landscape, indicative of Carpanini’s attachment to the country in which he was brought up.

    In 1972, Carpanini made his first visit to Snowdonia, the range of five mountain peaks of which Snowdon is the highest in Wales. He drew the mountain from a distance, most likely from the shore of Llyn Llydaw, a lake to the east. In composition and tonal definition, his drawing is reminiscent of Cézanne’s many depictions of Mont Ste-Victoire, the mountain in Aix-en-Provence, which was an important natural motif in the French artist’s work. In his charcoal drawing, the ruggedness of Snowdon contrasts with the glassy stillness of the lake and the vaporous clouds above. The foreground is modelled in free, almost scratchy sweeps of charcoal, encouraging us to focus on the more detailed form of the mountain in the distance.

    Carpanini exploits the artistic possibilities of charcoal to the full in his drawings. When sharpened, charcoal is capable of producing a fine line, but compared with other drawing media such as graphite and metalpoint, it is particularly suited to the creation of tonal effects. Strong, velvety black marks are characteristic of charcoal, as are the scuffed or smoky looking areas created by smudging the charcoal or using different sides of the stick. Through using the medium in this way, Carpanini produced not only topographical pictures but representations of atmosphere.

  • About the artist
    David Carpanini was born in Abergwynfi, Glamorgan. He studied at Gloucestershire College of Art from 1964 to 1968, and then at the Royal College of Art in London from 1968 to 1971. During his time at the RCA he was awarded the British Institution’s Scholarship for Engraving. From 1992 to 2000 he was Professor of Art at the University of Wolverhampton. Carpanini’s work centres around the landscape of his native Wales, and even in those works in which human presence is seen or felt, the natural landscape is often the dominating motif. Carpanini is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, and a member of other notable institutions, including the Royal Society of British Artists and the Royal West of England Academy. He was the first Welsh President of the Royal Society of Painter - Printmakers.
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  • Details
    Charcoal on paper
    height: 56.00 cm, width: 75.00 cm
    Purchased from the New Art Centre, March 1974
    br: DLC '72
    purchased from the New Art Centre, March 1974
    GAC number