Smith, Stan - Colours of Burano

Artist: Smith, Stan
Materials: Board
Dimensions (cm): 75 x 50
Dimensions (inches): 29.5 x 19.7
Signature: Signed and titled on label verso
Frame: Very simple wooden frame
Stock No: 0392
Provenance: Stan Smith estate

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Genre: Architecture and buildings, Landscape


A vivid painting of the brighly coloured quayside houses on the island of Burano near Venice.

This painting features in one of the artist’s well known books on painting, Oil Painting Workbook, published by David & Charles, in which he writes:

The colour harmony here is based on the three primaries: red, yellow and blue. Notice, however, that the red is not a bright, primary red but is a burnt sienna. The blues and yellows are similarly ‘knocked back’ by introducing hints of other colours into them. (Oil Painting Workbook page 35).

Trade screts revealed:

Why, you may ask, is this picture, which features in a book on oil painting, actually completed in acrylics?

Working in oils is generally more time-consuming, and pressure to meet his publisher’s deadlines meant that Smith had to take some short cuts.  Once the painting was photographed and on the printed page, it was nigh impossible to spot the difference.  Several other works that feature in his books of oil painting were also executed in acrylics.

A copy of Oil Painting Workbook is a available to the buyer on request.