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  • Writer's pictureWayne Sleeth

The Moselle Project : Pause for Thought

Updated: Mar 4

As Projet57 ( following the Moselle river through the french departments of Meurthe-et-Moselle and Moselle ) becomes the Mosel Projekt at the Schengen border, a brief pause and a handful of statistics...Mixed news !

The Moselle/ Mosel river is 560 km long from its modest source at Bussang in the Vosges to the german confluence with the Rhine at Koblenz. Of the 314 km of 'french waters' l have covered in documentary artwork only 137 km, between Flavigny-sur-Moselle and Schengen. 24% of the total length of the river...

Of the four simplified parts - the Vosgian, Meurthe-et-Mosellan, Mosellan and german Moseltal stretches - l am satisfied that l've now covered the two middle zones. My way of working is like beach-combing; certain parts l pass through time and time again, as there is always something of interest l have missed, a different vantage point, a specific place to visit and not just observe.

Part two is for me now complete ( famous last words). Walking and working twice at the 'Boucles de Moselle' in Meurthe-et-Moselle, between Maron and Liverdun ...





... with a visit to the cathedral-city of Toul, l have decided not to double back and retrace the Vosgian part of the river.

Having covered 137 km of this 'Turner Pilgrimage' on the bicentenary year (1824-2024) l have now made almost 200 pieces of artwork - drawings, watercolours, etchings, pola-paintings and paintings - which isn't too bad...2 artworks per kilometre ? 2 a/km on the dashboard !

( My kangoo is as tired as l am, but happily just as obstinate. My backpack of mobile artwork materials however, didn't last. Too ripped = RIP )

The self-imposed winter break was also a means to catch up with this blog ( and myself ! ) after 6 showings already of my Moselle project work, organise a print version for exhibitions in january, march, and four in april 2024 ! ...Back in the studio, paint, etch, and frame all this recent work... And also, get a new clutch and tyres for the Kangoo ; Longer trips ( into Luxembourg and Germany ) were due for the spring. From Sierck-les-Bains and Schengen ( next blog episode ) to the very end - at Coblenz - via a second visit to marvelous, historic city of Trier ( Trêves ), which l had already visited in 2023...


La Porta Negra and a view of the Moselle and the Simeonstift, Trier/ Trêves, 2023



My future blog posts will be trilingual - in english, french and german versions. More work ! And from here on, the Moselle twists and winds, at times almost upon itself, through Das Moseltal.

As JMW Turner himself said, "There is a sketch at every turn".


W.

29 feb, updated march 2024

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