S_V_H The 2 Bach Minuets Together

Bach Minuet in G major

Bach Minuet in B minor

Here are the two finished Bach Minuets together along with the video explaining how these two artworks came about, why they look the way they do, and where I am going with this art

Even I am surprised that up next I have another Bach project, the Prelude from Cello Suite No. 1 in g major BWV 1007.  What caught my attention was this video that does a detailed explanation of this music.  Every song I paint, I research.  I want to know the music’s story and any other influences it has, including covers by other musicians.  Even though I may like the music, I need to build a connection that goes beyond the song in order to spend many weeks of my time to complete a project.  That does not mean the music I paint has to always be the best of the best.  Many times I am attracted to the melody, the lyrics, or my past connection.   As for my next project, the video of this Classical Prelude perked my interest after going through my list of to do artworks of over thirty songs and not connecting to any.

Here is the scrolling sheet music which includes Bachs own hand written version:

For interest, at less for me, here is my good-enough-to start for now,17th version of my 35 second condensed cover of this short 2 minute forty second Bach masterpiece.


Let me presume that anyone with a Classical music training will not be kind to my version.   I am an unique portrait painter and the Prelude for J S Bach’s first Cello Suite is my subject, and the music gives the image character and a voice.


Scott Von Holzen

S_V_H Bach Chaconne BWV 1004, Final Image

Bach Partita No. 2 in D minor – Chaconne, BWV 1004 with a maximum height of 20 3/4 inches x 29 1/4 inches in length.

Bach’s Partita No. 2 Chaconne is finally done.  The work sheet for this music I dated July 3rd. I mentioned that for it is hard to write this entry for this project has exhausted my love and appreciation for this great music.  Like earlier works this deliberately small-sized artwork continues the trend of consuming huge amounts of time. I don’t expect to shorten production time until this art has fully exploited the current sculptural look.  For me, a three-dimensional look better represents the full range of music.

Taking a look at Bach’s notation from his Chaconne manuscript,  I used his hand writing style to personalize parts of the design of this artwork, and kept my color choices limited to mostly browns and grays.  I added a splash of violet,  to relieve color boredom, which I like doing when a few colors dominate an artwork. After photographing, I spend time cutting out this final image from its background only to discover that I had use Photoshop to paint two small parts,  pale green. Finally, I spend more project time adding two other small pieces to the music that are missing from this final image. Here is a sample from the Bach manuscript:

I was curious about a recent New Your Times article  that maps the musical taste of the fans of 50 current popular musical artists on YouTube.  I wanted to know how out-of-touch I was with today’s popular music. Going through the list I found that I was at least aware of, or have actually listen to the music of 21 artists on the list.  When I checked my iTunes for their music,  that list changed. Putting both observations together,  my a musical connection to today’s popular musical artists expanded to 28 out of fifty.   I thought that was a decent number for only being a casual fan of current music.


Scott Von Holzen


S_V_H J S Bach Chaconne BWV 1004 Image 2

J. S. Bach’s Chaconne is a small work, under three feet, but is turning out to be a time-consuming artwork. I have mentioned the advantages of smaller artworks, and have created them when needed, but only recently have I known the real need to limit the artwork’s size.

Smallness become the guiding rule as this art evolved from applying acrylic paint to canvas, to  applying acrylic to canvas and then attaching the music as wooden pieces of sculpture on and off of the canvas. By adding this unconstrained extra dimension the amount of extra time needed to completion has greatly increased.  Smallness to save time has become a practical necessity.

Here is a video of Chaconne played beautifully on the guitar by John Feeley:

Scott Von Holzen

S_V_H J S Bach’s Chaconne BWV1004, image 1

It sure is a long ways from Miles Davis’s, So What, to  Bach’s Chaconne, but this Bach melody seems to have been cutting-edge in its time which fits well with the many experimental styles of Miles Davis. Chaconne uses a support canvas that is only is eight inches by twenty-four in length.

Like my recent works this project will be small, because of the complicated issues of building the music.  Consider that unlike using paint applied to the canvas surface to define my music,  I am applying a three-dimensional object that is the music.  Those two notes you see in image one, all sit on top of the canvas. Because they are the first pieces,  and the guides for the rest of the music,  it took parts of a whole day in the Studio to correctly  place and mount them securely.

Here is Bach’s Chaconne considered by some of the best violinist to be the greatest music ever written.   The part that is the theme for this painting is heard at about 30 seconds in.  It is very short.

I have already added more to this canvas and you can see those in-between images by following me on Twitter.

Scott Von Holzen

S_V_H Bach BWV 1065 & BWV 1014 Update


The Grand Bach Hotel in Kyoto Japan.  These are two photos sent to me by my one contact in Japan, Asako Takigawa.




Here is a new image from the newly updated website of the Grand Bach Hotel in Kyoto Japan.  And yes, that is my painting.  I would never have thought back in 2006, when I started this journey to portray music, that I would  paint not one but two Bach’s paintings both where meant for this grand hotel.  Only one made it to Japan.  The second painting BWV 1065 is what you see.


The first artwork, BWV 1014 hangs today tacked to the wall in my studio.  Eventually, it I will have to frame it for sale. For now, I like it just where it is, close to me.   Scott Von Holzen