Gates of Justice

Gates of Justice

Out of stock

Size: 80 x 60 cm

Materials: oil on canvas

Date: 2019


This oil painting was executed for the Pintura Rapida painting contest in Granada on the 22nd Sept 2019 – no, I didn’t win – alas. The standard was oh so very high that I thought some of the contestants must be utilising some kind of witchcraft to gain such amazing results in so few hours.

Contestants were required to turn up at between 8.30 and 10:30 am this morning, with a blank canvas (it was given an official stamp), then we all complied by the rules and painted outdoors within the city of Granada. At 5 pm a hundred or so artists gathered in a square to show the fruits of their labour, on weighted easels.

I settled on painting a view of The Gates of Justice, which is a huge Moorish archway at one of the entrances to the Alhambra.

Once I had wrestled a bit with the perspective and got some vivid colours on the go, I then chose people that were there and quickly rendered them from one quick glance each. I like the way the smaller figures give scale to the monument. I had no model but I asked the lady in the foreground, who was looking at my cards, if I could paint her and she agreed.

The whole painting had to be executed really fast, there was no time to get fussy or picky. Recently I read a quote from Alex Katz which helped this mission, “Paint faster than you think!”

Even though I didn’t win the contest, I won a competition with myself – I showed up, when I was already feeling worn out, and I actually completed an oil painting. Also, painting a Moorish archway in Granada has been on my list of things to do for quite a while now – so that’s a tick!

Read more about my experience in this painting competition in my blog.

Additional information

Weight3 kg
Dimensions110 × 90 × 20 cm


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