In March 2013, Campfires In Winter were invited by the Groninger Museum in the Netherlands to participate in a music and art project. The idea behind the project was to ask a total of twenty-five musicians, selected by the museum from both the Netherlands and the rest of the world, to write and record a song inspired by a piece of art which would accompany the Natural Beauty exhibition in the form of an audio tour. The exhibition is a collection of paintings by world famous artists from the 17th century to the early 20th century. It is the life work of a German collector, who donated it to UNICEF. After the exhibition the works will be sold with all proceeds, as well as a small part of the entrance fee, donated to UNICEF. Visitors attending the exhibition can hire the audio tour from the museum’s information desk and listen to each song while viewing the painting that inspired it as well as being able to read through an accompanying booklet where the artists themselves have explained their inspiration for writing the accompanying piece of music.
The painting chosen by Campfires In Winter was Het Onweer by Jan Van Goyen (1637) and the inspiration for the track was explained by Robert in a short paragraph: “The contrast between the ominous, oppressive black sky and the calm in the distance initially caught our eye in this piece. The lone figure, head bowed and seemingly helpless to protect himself from the impending storm was an inspiration when it came to writing the lyrics. In the lyrics, I’ve tried to capture that feeling of helplessness as well as hinting that, even when it feels like things are caving in all round you, that darkness clears, giving the chance to move on”.
An accompanying CD of all the tracks by each participating artist was made and is available to purchase from the museum shop or via the museum website with all profits going to UNICEF.
The Natural Beauty exhibition runs at the Groninger Museum, Netherlands from 7th December 2013 – 25th May 2014.
released 03 February 2014
Recorded and mixed by Andrew Odell at Unit 55, Cumbernauld.