Picture post 13: flowering Apple Tree

MR 48 Apple tree, oil on canvas, 340 x 315, 1981.

One of Michael’s early influences was Vincent Van Gogh, which is clear in this small painting of a flowering apple tree in the family garden in Cambridgeshire. He had recently visited the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam and was working through some ideas gleaned from the trip. The paint is thickly applied on the canvas and the colours sing through the layers, reflecting the layers of  blossom on a tree. Michael preferred to paint from life at this point, he didn’t use photographs as a reference until much later, so this painting really captures a moment in time.