Die Acrylgemälde von Fernando de la Cueva, entstanden im Zusammenhang zum 75. Jahrestag des Schriftstellers und Piloten Saint Exupery. Eine Hommage an dessen Buch „Der Kleine Prinz“.
I have always been fascinated by the history of pilot and writer Antoine de Saint Exupery. His life was entangled with aviation as he grew up, at the same pace that airplanes became more and more efficient flying machines.
Some 15 years ago I had a commission to paint a very large work for some people who were fervent lovers of literature, so I decided to combine one of my aviation themes with something related to writing and, all of a sudden, Saint Exupery appeared in my mind. He had zealously loved writing and aviation, and, for this reason, most of his books combined both passions.
The final painting that I did showed an old Breguet XIV from Latecoere and a facsimile image of the Little Prince with a short caption from this book that pleased the couple who had commissioned it.
I liked the idea and, from that moment, I started a series of paintings showing the different airplanes that Saint Ex had flown combining them with some facsimile drawings and some phrases from his books that were well received by prospective customers.
My different exhibitions in Kunstreich gallery have displayed a few of these Saint Ex paintings, so when, at the beginning of 2019, I recalled that on July 31stof this year it would be the 75 anniversary of Saint Exupery disappearance while flying a reconnaissance mission over occupied France, I thought that it would be a fitting tribute to this wonderfully absent minded character to show in beautiful Bern a small exhibition of paintings devoted exclusively to him.
These works combine long diptychs that are two meter long with square frames in one by one meter dimensions, some more conventional rectangular sizes, a multiple with four twenty by twenty centimeter pieces and some other varied shapes.
The titles and dimensions are as follows:
1.- “P-38” 100×100 cm acrylics and mixed media on wood. This mixed media painting shows a well-known Saint Ex photograph taken by journalist John Phillips that I have treated and embedded, together with some views of the P-38 instrument panel and several pages from the wartime manuals of the aircraft on an acrylic background. Some very bold stenciled characters with fake rivets painted in aluminum acrylic and a P-38 plane also painted in acrylics finish off this bold work done on purpose to show passers by that the exhibition is about my dear Saint Exupery, and also is supposed to be an allegory of the difficulties experienced by him while trying to master this fast aircraft, with a very much related text taken from Lettre a un americain, probably, one, if not, his latest piece of writing.
2.- “Terre des hommes” 12×100 cm acrylics on wood is a simple and clean study of a Breguet XIV flying over some warm background with a short caption taken from the book Terre des Hommes.
3.- “Tu serais toujours mon ami” diptych 35×200 cm x 2 acrylics on wood shows to advantage the P-38 Lockheed Lightning in which Saint Ex disappeared. There are no photographs of this particular plane, so I had to do a lot of research to paint it as accurate as possible. There is a Little Prince drawing facsimile painted on the right hand side of the picture.
4.- “Ou sont les hommes?” 60×140 cm acrylics on wood. It shows a Breguet XIV and there is a Little Prince drawing facsimile painted on the right hand side of the picture.
5.- “Vol de nuit” 120×60 cm acrylics on wood. A P-38 Lightning head on with a caption from the book Vol de nuit.
6.- “31.7.1944.?” multiple 20×20 cm x 4 acrylics on linen. It shows the date in which Saint Ex disappeared with a P-38 Lightning.
7.- “ La guerre n’est pas une aventure” 12×100 cm acrylics on wood is, once again, a simple study of a P-38 Lightning flying on a cloudy with a short caption taken from the book Pilote de Guerre.
8.- “ Le désert est beau“ diptych 60×60 cm x 2 acrylics on wood. It shows a Breguet XIV and the little Prince.
9.- “ Mon avion “ diptych 35×200 cm 2 acrylics on wood. Caudron Simoun, the little Prince and a portrait of Saint Exupery. It shows the encounter between Saint Exupery and the little Prince, after his accident near Kairo.