S_V_H Chopin Prelude Op. 28 No. 4

I have been working on this next project since October 8th. This work will be another Interactive Constructive Sculpture or to shorten the style name this is my next Music Box construction. Yes, as mentioned in previous posts the music has now become an integral part of this art, or then again, the music has now become a separate art performance attached to a visual artwork with the same name. Names or styles do not matter. What matters is originality and capturing the attention of the viewer.

According to Wikipedia, this music was requested by Chopin to be played at his funeral. I probably first heard it in the movie The Pianist, 2002, which I do remember watching. Rediscovering it lately I didn’t think of this music being necessarily sad or tragic, but rather a great example that reaches deep into my understanding of musical appreciation. I am not talking but music that touches one’s soul. That seems meaningless to me, for just what is “one’s soul?” I cannot define it, but I can say I feel it when I listen to it. Here is the version from the soundtrack of the movie The Pianist, which is two minutes and twenty-six seconds in length.

Of course, to not strain a viewer’s attention span much beyond one minute, I had to do some musical chopping. I have this draft arrangement that any Chopin fan would find shabby in comparison to the original. I would agree with that. That does change what I had to do. Viewers in front of a Picasso, Van Gogh, or Rembrandt artwork would be hard-pressed to last even one minute. Currently, the music is about a minute and a half, which is long. My hope is by editing out some of the repetitious measures, and upping the pace, that the music will keep the listener’s attention from drifting. The ending is also uplifting compared to all the covers I listened to. That is to keep the viewer from dozing off.

Chopin Prelude

The following is the only picture I have of this project. On a group of tables, I have laid out an idea of how the music will sweep across and beyond a six-foot-long, by two-foot canvas, it will somehow be mounted on.

Scott Von Holzen

S_V_H Chopin Polonaise in A Flat major Final image

Chopin Polonaise in A Flat Major, Op 53, 24 inches by 36 inches

This Chopin artwork is finished, kinda.  Since it is going to be around the studio for a few more days, I probably will touch it up, because this is one of my rare artworks, that has to be framed to actually look finished. Of course, this is a commission work, so I will have to wait for the image of it hanging in the Music room to see how good this artwork really is.

That now means that it is time for me to get back to the good stuff of finishing my half done Tom Petty artwork,  pound out a few more Mini-artworks for my Etsy website, and get in the mood for this years Christmas Painting, Silver Bells.

Scott Von Holzen

S_V_H Chopin’s Polonaise in A flat major 4 image

This fourth image of this popular Chopin music is near finished. I am also surprised how well this painting moved along, without  any major issues.  The planning had to be good because of my limited working space, and that paid off for there is not much I would change. The overall look of the music is pretty good considering I had to fit a lot of Chopin into 36 inches by 24 inches without the artwork looking crowded. All that is now left is for me to do is to sharpen the edges, shape up the music,  clean up the background,  write in the title of the music, and finally sign and date.

Since this work is different from my current style I do have so thoughts on how this project is turning out.  I like the reflective qualities of the silver and bronze colors, and their changing colors in different light and angles.  That is a surface feature for me, but also it works well with my theme of simulating movement in these artworks. Reliving the past with the flatness, and especially the oblong shape of the music are two traits that can create  highly marketable artworks,  especially to musicians.  Although I will not return to this look unless commissioned, I still enjoyed the challenge and income of this type of project.

Scott Von Holzen

S_VH_H Classical Music Series of Mini Paintings

This is my first Series of mini-artworks based on four well-known Classical music composers.  Moving clockwise from the left I have Mozart’s Clarinet Concerto,  Frederic Chopin’s Nocturne Op. 9 No. 2, J.S. Bach’s Cello Suite No. 1 in G major ,and Beethoven’s 5th Symphony.  These are all individual artworks, that I will be making multiples of each.   The Chopin and Bach works are the largest being over 13 inches in length by 13 inches in height.   I have documented the production each of these artwork, using templates and some standardized parts, to reduce time along with the price.  I am looking at $89 for the Beethoven and $125 for the other three as a starting prices for this Series 1.  These works will be available on my Etsy painting site before December 1st.


In the video I referred to my neighboring vendor’s display of his 39 dollar sea turtles.  Here is that picture of these little critters that he sold all day long  and what became an awakening at my first Art and Craft Fair in Appleton Wis:

So it goes………….

Scott Von Holzen

S_V_H Chopin Polonaise Op. 53

This is the third image of Chopin’s Polonaise Op. 53.  Even though I have eliminated every rule of sheet music that defines it, and none of my artworks if attempted to be played would actually sound like the music they are portraying, that look of sheet music is definitely in this painting.  This is not an issue with Classical Music because I choose music that is in the Public Domain.  Still, I don’t generally paint music this way, because of the look, and because I would like this art to appeal to a greater audience of music lovers who would not necessarily understand music notation.

But……, what separates this artwork from most of my other current work, is that this painting is marketable to a large segment of potential customers which are musicians and lovers of Classical Music. These people know their music better than I do, and want to see the music in their artworks, and know where the painting appears in the original music. That is true of my client for this artwork which will be a gift for a musician.  As this art keeps moving forward creativity I must not forget what has gotten me to where I am today, and what will still support this adventure in the future.

Besides viewing Image 3 you can also see and listen to this wonderful piece by Chopin’s Polonaise in A flat:

For the most part the music is in place, and it does fit in this constricted format. The next step, which I have already started is to add some technical musical items you find in sheet music. I see all this add-on stuff as interest.  In this short excerpt Chopin used a number of “grace notes,” two “trills,” a couple of “crushed notes,” and a “fortissimo.” Each of these items need to be drawn in, and I am not a drawer. I rather take a photograph to save time. Like the words you see in most of my artworks my drawing skills need a lot of time, patience and determination to make sure the results are beyond  acceptable. Next up I will be adding more interest like “ties,” and “diminuendos.”

if you like to see another image of this music take a look at this piece of the original Chopin signed manuscript of this music,


Scott Von Holzen

S_V_H Chopin Polonaise Op.53 image 2

This is Frederic Chopin’s surprising  Polonaise Op. 53 image two. The surprise is to see so much music already in place.  I have not painted in this style since the Japan artwork in early 2016.  I do remember the difficulties with that similar commissioned  Kyoto artwork, and because this time of the year is busy, I knew I needed to find time-saving measures to meet my client’s timeline.  My first idea was to draw in lines that I could than use to guide the orderly placement of the music.  I changed the size , color and brightness, of each group to blend in with the background while still being able to connect to the music.

I than improved on an idea I used with the Kyoto painting.   Using a thin piece of plywood I cut out the music to size. I than attached a square post and guide markers.  It did not take long to than learned that I could use it as a musical stamp. This saves me from the tedious task of free hand drawing in each note.


This artwork has a background of Burnt Sienna that I covered with Burnt Umber light.  I than added Burnt Umber light to the bronze paint to get the shades I wanted with the main music lines.  The smaller accent lines I painted bone black.  For the music I am using the same Winsor & Newton Silver I used for the Japan work.  When I show the Japan work, as an example,  my customer like it for the silver made the music stand out from the background.

Scott Von Holzen


Both the silver and the bronze are reflective acrylic paint colors, that change shades when viewed at different angles and in different lights. This effect creates a visual delight to the eyes.  It is as if you can see the vibrations of the music of Chopin move across the canvas.  Looking at this painting I feel the joy that is on display.  This unfinished Classical artwork is already making an impact. Chopin’s Polonaise defines this arts philosophy of making visual music that grabs at you emotions as if my notes where the sound.




S_V_H Chopin’s Polonaise in A flat major, Op. 53

I have painted Chopin in the past and certainly in the future, but,  in the now I am also painting Chopin.  This time it is one of his 23 Polonaises, and one of Chopin’s most admired compositions, published in 1843, according to Wikipedia. The casual listener to Classical Music will know this melody if not the composer.

Here is Vladmir Horowitz cruising through the hard parts of this Chopin Polonaise.  It is at 1:18 minutes and over the next second you hear the music of this artwork. Also, using Wikipedia I found the meaning of polonaise which is a dance of polish origins. Okay!

The smaller detail image and the full first image look a lot a like, and are not much to look it. That is because this artwork is a flash back in style to the 2016 Bach painting for the Grand Bach Hotel in Kyoto Japan.  This Chopin artwork is obviously different from my last post featuring the music of Tom Petty, and that is because it is a commissioned requested artwork to be done in the Grand Bach painting style.

Here is  the Bach BWV 988 – Aria painting, which is 64 inches in length, while the Chopin work is 24 inches by 36 inches.

Next up I need to add a foundation to place the music on. It will be something like what you see in those darker brown rectangular strips in the Bach painting.  This is important to do for by adding an intermediary structure on top of the background that will than connect it to the music.  Otherwise, if it is left out the music would seem to be floating in an empty space. My challenge is to accomplish this in way so that this Chopin painting updates this style.  I am not doing this project to repeat the Bach painting with a name and music change only.

Scott Von Holzen