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Borsheim Art Newsletter:

by Kelly Borsheim copyright 12 January 2016

  1. Charcoal Drawings + Nitram Promo
  2. Art Collecting: The Vogels
  3. Time to Varnish?
  4. Teaching in Firenze – one month only
  5. Drawing Figure in Stone by Vasily Fedorouk
  6. Blog Highlights: Museo dell'Opera - Firenze
  7. Subscription Info.

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[silver sculpture museo dell'opera Florence Italy]

Silver Sculpture
Museo dell'Opera, Florence, Italy

Dear Art Lover,

It is January and this month I celebrate 15 years as a full-time artist! Wow.. thank you for being a part of this adventure. Your support has been invaluable. I would like to celebrate by making it easier to buy some art that moves you. Here goes:
  • 15% off on all available sculptures. The pricelist is here:
  • 15% off on all available 2-D work, from paintings and drawings in any medium to giclée fine art reproductions.

  • If you buy two or more Borsheim Art Works
    before 15 February 2016,
    you will also receive
    a $50 framing gift certificate
    to use as you like. This is a
    Special Offer
    from Don Elliott at
    The Frame Shop/Franklin Barry Gallery in Indianapolis.

    Buy Art

    These offers end February 15, 2016. Prices you see on the Web site are BEFORE the 15% savings offer. Thank you for your interest!

    Charcoal Drawings + Nitram Promo

    I have always loved black and white images, and am typically pretty impressed when I see a well-done charcoal drawing. I never thought that I would have the patience to even attempt such a thing. But love is love and oh so hard to resist.

    Just before Christmas I received a wonderful e-mail from Jerzy Niedojadlo. He is the new owner of the famous Nitram Charcoal company. I was dismayed years ago to find out that the Nitram in France would no longer be producing its quality drawing products. I bought as much Nitram charcoal as I could afford, in fact. Nitram (the founder Martin Gros’ first name spelled backwards) began from humble beginnings after World War II made it difficult to find work. Not actually born as its own company until the late 1960s, it dramatically improved its quality after a large order boosted the business. You may read more about Nitram’s beginnings here:

    Jerzy is a working artist and was inspired to go to France with his partner Patricia to learn the techniques from Martin’s son, Daniel. They now own the business and have moved it to Canada. And last year about this time, he sent me a Nitram Baton to try out while I was living in Croatia! Learn more here:

    Recently, Jerzy wrote to share with me a new video about Nitram that debuted at the CreativeWorld Trade Show in Frankfurt, Germany, last year. I feel honored and excited to have several of my own charcoal drawings included in this production. I hope you enjoy this showcase of charcoal art as presented on youtube.com [my work is seen at 1 minute 4 seconds, 1:04]:


[Charcoal Drawing Work-in-progress Fontana a Milano]

WIP - Una fontana a Milano:
I could use a sexier title than "A Fountain in Milan"
72 x 54 cm (28 x 21 in), Unfinished Charcoal drawing 2016

[Enough - Charcoal Male figure]

64 x 23 cm (25 x 9")
Nitram charcoal with pastel
grey Roma-brand paper
© Kelly Borsheim

Art Collecting: The Vogels

As an art collector myself, I found this interesting article online written by Jed Lipinski. It is titled, “How a Working-Class Couple Amassed a Priceless Art Collection” and it is the story of art collectors Herb and Dorothy Vogel in New York City. The full article may be found here:

Mr. Lipinski has written and engaging article that describes two love affairs really. He tells how Dorothy and Herb met and how he shared his secret passion with her. Their collection really became their life-long creation. Here are some of my favorite excerpts from the article [all direct quotes].

They had only a few criteria: The work had to be affordable; it had to fit in their apartment; and it had be transportable via taxi or subway. Not part of the equation? The artist’s reputation. “We bought what we liked,” Dorothy said. “Simple as that.”

When they spotted something beyond their means, they’d find a way to make the purchase: They’d buy on credit; they’d forgo a vacation; they’d even throw in cat-sitting to sweeten a deal. And the artists loved them for it.

[Artist Lucio] Pozzi offered an alternate explanation. “To ask them to sell a piece of their collection would be like asking me to cut off a square yard of one of my paintings,” he said. “They were artists, and the collection was their work of art.”

After Herb died in 2012, the article quotes:
“I have no regrets,” Dorothy said. “I’ve had a wonderful life. And I believe Herb and I were made to be together.”

[She's An Artist]

[Buy my art before I am dead]

[Artist self portrait]
Untitled, 20 x 20 cm, oil painting on wood
© 2015 Hélène Delmaire

Time to Varnish?

Speaking of collecting art, I recently bought a painting from a dear friend of mine, Hélène Delmaire. It was so new that we decided to wait for her to ship the art until after the holidays. Before she sent it, she told me that she had put retouch varnish on it. This is a good intermediate protection for oils that have not entirely dried. Oil paint dries chemically, long after it feels dry to the touch. There are many variables involved in this process and each artist has her unique way of applying materials. Typically it is safe to put actual final varnish on an oil painting after about six months.

However, art is sometimes sold before that time and we artists get so excited about a newly finished work that we are too impatient not to share right away.

So, perhaps we can make January “Varnish Month.” If you own any oil paintings, give them a closer inspection. They may benefit from adding a varnish on them. The colors will seem more alive after a good varnish, too. Also, if it has been many years, it could be that the painting needs to be cleaned before re-varnishing. Check with your local frame shop or art dealer. They will know who can do this sort of work for you. It is worth it to protect the investment you have made in the art that you love.

Teaching in Firenze – one month only

I often get requests to teach workshops or private lessons. The problem these days is often logistics. However, I have a student returning to Florence, Italy, to continue private painting lessons from about mid-March to mid-April. I no longer live in Firenze, so will have to find a place to stay and that means that I will have time away from my own work to focus on other students. I can go to your home or workspace in Firenze and teach individuals or a group any available time [one day or many] during those calendar dates. Please contact me if you would like to arrange something. Thank you.

[Still Life Art Lessons]
Sitting On a Shelf
, 68 x 68 cm (27 x 27 in)
Original Oil Painting on linen
© 2014 Kelly Borsheim

[Original Drawing by sculptor Vasily Fedorouk]
Original Drawing

© Vasily Fedorouk

Drawing by Vasily Fedorouk

Most sculptors worth their salt draw. Here is a drawing by my late mentor and friend Vasily Fedorouk . . . see more of his art online at: http://vasilyfedorouk.com
There are a limited number of available works, but please inquire.

Recent Blog Topics: Museo dell'Opera Florence Italy

You may follow a variety of art topics on my blog, mostly travel and art:
(This is a different subscription list than the one for this art newsletter.)

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[August Art Auction]

Thank you for sharing this journey with me. Thank you for sharing this newsletter with your friends and colleagues. Thank you. Please let me know if you would like to commission an artwork.

Kelly Borsheim
12 January 2016

[Niccolò Barabino]

Niccolò Barabino-Painter Extraordinaire

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Saddened to hear of the death and suffering of artist David Bowie.

Give a Book Review:

Thank you for your interest and support in the book I wrote this past summer about being a street artist in Italy. I was thrilled to receive such glowing feedback about how I had shared not only the art and the artists, but also something of the political environment regarding street art, interaction with the public and other street performers (my favorite chapter is the one in which I have invited children to join me on the pavement), as well as images of the Renaissance City herself.

The book is titled "My Life as a Street Painter in Florence, Italy." If you have read the book and would like to help in the promotion of it, perhaps you would consider writing up a short review for Amazon.com (or even send me a testimonial for my own site). Your review does not have to be fancy. The intention is to help other people get a better idea about what is inside and whether or not they may enjoy the read.

Just click here. Scroll down to the section on Customer Reviews. Click on the button to the right that says, "Create your own review" Sign in and follow their guide.

or from Amazon.com:
Order from Amazon (US):
My Life as a Street Painter in Florence, Italy

If you have not gotten your copy of the book, you may order directly from my site:

[book street painting florence italy]
Above: Cover for book:
"My Life as a Street Painter in Florence, Italy"

by Kelly Borsheim

Order the book today
(Click on the image above.)

I have about 20 copies here with me in Italy, so if you are also here, just write me and we will organize the rest…

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