It seems like a lifetime ago when we were able to freely travel.  Our trip to Florence, Italy was part of one of our typical but still special European visits, with a leisurely stop in England at the beginning and end, but with side trips to Italy and Holland included.

I have been to Florence before, but it is still a favorite spot.  I think of it as golden for the light, for the art, for the people.

And so when I came across this carousel on the square, it was one of those moments when it all seemed to come together in rich detail.

I debated when I took this painting on if I wanted to chose a subject with so much complex detail.  But it was the summer of 2020, with a pandemic and the agony of a country in disarray. It was such an unsettling time. I decided that children waiting their turn on the lovely horses might be just the ticket to take my mind off, well, everything.

I agonized over details, right down to whether to add another pigeon landing at the bottom of the foreground.  I eventually decided he inhibited our gaze to the figures further in and so out he came. He flew away.

This piece was a huge challenge for me, just what I needed to make the long hours of an endless year pass.  It took me to where I wanted to go. A return to socialization and joy in a beautiful, complex world.  I really do miss travel.

The Carousel, Florence  oil, 30 x 24″