Paintings and drawings from Aranjuez, location of the Summer Palace

At Aranjuez, detail

I did these small paintings at Aranjuez, Spain.  The Summer Palace of Spain is located there.  I wrote a bit about Aranjuez at


A fall scene at Aranjuez:

Aranjuez Gazebos, 12.7 x 17.8 cm, watercolor
Aranjuez Gazebos, 12.7 x 17.8 cm, watercolor



Palacio de Aranjuez pen and ink
Palacio de Aranjuez pen and ink, (5 x7″, 12.7 x 17.8 cm)









At Aranjuez, cataracts (acrylics), A3/8.3 x 11.5" on high quality paper
At Aranjuez, cataracts (acrylics), A3/29. cm x 42 cm, 11.5″ x 16.5″,  on high quality paper

At Aranjuez is the same scene as Carmen at Aranjuez.  But there is no railing separating her from the harsh reality below –it’s nearly winter, the icy gray of the cold Rio Tajo running on the backside of the Palacio.  Nonetheless there is beauty of sky and the shimmering reflections to enchant, but, yet, stay back.  It reminds of those mythologies we invent to account for both the cruelty and charm of existence; no wonder our deities are so self-contradicting.  

At Aranjuez, detail
At Aranjuez, detail


At Aranjuez, detail
At Aranjuez, detail



At Aranjuez, detail
At Aranjuez, detail












Carmen at Aranjuez
Carmen at Aranjuez, 12.7 x 17.8 cm, watercolor

I was thinking of how I would miss my new friends, the warmth of her standing there contrasting with the coldness of the water, the building, affection as a guard against life’s sometimes harsh realities.


This building sits just across from the Palace.  It was built in the mid 1800’s and completely renovated.

Palcio de Sivela, Aranjuez
Palcio de Sivela, Aranjuez, 12.7 x 17.8 cm, watercolor (sold)

On the back road to Aranjuez- Torcas de Palancares

Lagunas de Cañada

December 6, 2016

We set off on our journey from Valencia to Aranjuez at 7am on Sunday.  The train route takes you west through massive fields of grapes dotted by the occasional and equally massive wine storage units jutting some 25 meters toward the clouds, stopping in a seemingly endless number of small towns along the way.  Progress is slow and the it gets much slower as then we enter the National Park known as Torcas de Palancares, leaving the farms behind.

The ravines (barrancos) along the train route from Valencia to Aranjuez dig deeply into the rocky orange soil. Because it has been raining, itself a bit of a refreshing oddity, rivulets flow beneath the train as it slows to 20 kph as we inched across trestles, looking straight over the side at the rocky bottom far below.  You don’t feel confident out there in the middle.  They are going that slowly for good reason.

There are more people on the train – so vacant we practically got on a first name basis with the conductor- than live in the protected zone portion of the journey, judging by the total lack of dwellings and just the occasional dirt road.  A large bird, a hawk or perhaps even an owl, swoops across the tracks, looking for an unwary rabbit.  The boars are too big to lift so they are safe from his talons.

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