Late last year I made a painting “Desconocido” for Fields, Morris and Verdin to accompany their initiative to bring unusual grape varieties and blends to the market under one umbrella. Their proposition is the antithesis of global corporate offerings and the focus is determinedly on the small scale vineyards producing wines from vines that were perhaps once renowned but have been forgotten or which are simply unusual. The aim is to foster a deeper understanding of the complexity and depth of wines from around the world. The umbrella will be called “?unknown” and the Co-operative are getting ready to launch the first edition “desconocido#1” a brilliant monastrell from Alicante made by the highly reputed winemaker Telmo Rodriguez. This will be followed with a white wine from Crete “mistirio#1b” made from the almost extinct Dafni variety (a new one on me) which will be on Virgin Atlantic Airlines in September (although you may have to be in business class to get it)…. and more to follow…
The images here show the way in which crops from the larger image will be used as the labels. Lovely stuff!
A bit about the painting
Notions of history and tradition as well as regeneration and discovery entwine in the wine project so my intention in the painting was to provide a visual analogue to these strands through an image of a family, itself a complex mingling of personalities and aspirations bound by a common cause. They are the forgotten, anonymous but honest workers connected by blood, earth and history to the terrain that they tend. The intention is that the generations of the family, grandparents, uncles, parents and children, will lend personality and flavour to the branding of the various wines that arise from the project and in doing so highlight their differences while simultaneously re-enforcing their connectedness.
Here are some of the studies I made while building the family