Austrian Visit – at Gneixendorf

We arrived at Gneixendorf  in brilliant sunshine, had an excellent lunch at the village restaurant and arrived at the ‘Beethoven Barn’ as arranged at 3pm.  This ‘barn’ turned out to be a  most beautifully proportioned  Baroque building set in a wide open park adjacent to the manor house at the edge of the village.  The present owner of the land and buildings had arrived to unlock the gates for us to drive our vehicles up to the building.  As you can see I took lots of photos but they cannot adequately convey the extraordinary tranquility and decayed beauty of this very special place.The interior of the barn was, if anything, even more spectacular than the exterior. The ground floor has one section double height with a lower vaulted section at one end.This photo shows Dima setting up the Tagtool equipment on the first floor where Dieter’s intricate web of black and white painting covers the whole of the floor, columns and vaulted ceiling of the floor above – a truly virtuoso piece, even more spectacular in ‘real life’ than in the videos on his website!  Dieter had invited the dancer Bea Schrader and drummer Florian Tuchanek to work with us and Sebastian, Joost and Dima would make the video documentation of all the sessions.   To begin with we worked on the ground floor – this is a photo of the equipment test.   I am not able to post any video clips of the day’s performances until we get home and Dima has time to do the editing.  When I was having a short break from drawing I took a few photos for the blog with my little camera but sadly I found I had taken no photos of Bea’s dancing, which is a great pity.   After the first session we all moved upstairs and continued to draw until 9pm when it was time to load up the vans in the darkness and drive back to Tulln.  I was so happy to have this opportunity to draw with Dieter again – and the dramatic addition of  Florian’s drumming and Bea’s dance movements set against the backdrop of Dieter’s monochrome mural paintings all contributed to making this visit to Gneixendorf a truly memorable event.

After supper in Tulln we found that preparations for the Chink Chank were well underway and the double projection was already installed so we took the opportunity to have a little ‘unofficial’ jam session – this time on the plain flat white wall of the Kunstwerkstatt.  As these photos show it is a really big area on which to draw – I’m looking forward to seeing the artists’ performances at the Chink Chank over the next few days. It was well after midnight before we turned off the projectors!

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