A First Look At Our Special Artwork by Artist Carmela Caldart

A few months ago, some artwork that accompanied a series of great features in Punch magazine about natural wine and changing attitudes towards certain types of wine in the US caught Katie’s eye. They were bright and full of life, colourful, engaging and had women at the front and centre. Women eating tapas. Women pouring bottles. Women drinking wine without a forced grin or a knowing smirk: women comfortably enjoying the things they loved.

And then there were the bottles and snacks themselves. Vaguely cartoonish in their deliciousness, they begged to be tasted. They showed the excitement and joy of food and drink, of eating and drinking. Underneath the leading image, these digital paintings were created by Barcelona-based artist Carmela Caldart.

We contacted Carmela to ask, first of all, if she was selling prints of the Punch paintings, so we could frame them and hang them in Corto. Of course, these were commissioned by the magazine, and so couldn’t be reproduced for anyone without the magazine’s permission — which we saw as being a long and ultimately costly and probably unsuccessful venture.

“I could paint something for you instead though?” she offered. “Why don’t you commission something of your own?”

Putting grandiose ideas of Napoleon-esque portraits aside, this was an offer too tempting to refuse. But being in the early stages of opening a bar during a pandemic, we didn’t have the readies to pay Carmela what she deserved for the commission.

This is when something amazing happened. On the back of what Katie felt was an extremely cheeky request for donations towards the artwork, it turned out that Corto has some very cool supporters who stepped up and chipped in and made it happen. We were chuffed to bits that within a couple of weeks we could go back to Carmela and say, yes! Do it! Please paint us a beautiful picture!

And she did. And here it is. (Please forgive the watermark which we’re using for now until the big version is printed, framed and hung.)

The Contributors

Here is where we say a huge and heartfelt thanks to the people who donated their hard-earned cash to help us pay for a piece of art that we think helps represent what Corto is and will be — a place very rooted in our hometown of Clitheroe, where everyone can gather and enjoy delicious drinks. So thank you, thank you, thank you to:

Joel Crookes

Cath Potter

Dick Withecombe

Maryanne O’Connor

Chris Norman

Emily Oram

Michael Yates

The Big Unveiling

We’re going to be printing and framing Carmela’s digital painting “Corto” and will hang it with pride on the best wall in Corto (whichever one that ends up being). We’ll have an unveiling, hopefully, on our opening day. More details to follow when we figure out when that will be!!

#art #crowdfunding