It was with some interest that I wait for Halloween in Spain. In the UK Halloween has been taken over by fantasy and Hollywood. Having witnessed the vibrant life filled 24/7 festivals in Andalucias Manilva and San Roque I'm wondering what will take place in a week's time. The guide books all say that in Spain Halloween is a time of special respect when the Spanish people in families remember, honour with prayers and flowers their dead relatives. The work above is one that I painted last autumn in Sabden Fold Lancashire, there the small farms that are huddled under the lee of the moors in a linear settlement pattern look like a string of pearls, frost or rain or more rain is the order of the day there. Sabden is a place of witchcraft. That is why I painted the work in the spiritual colours of healing and peace as I thought about that last walk of the so named Pendle Witches who were wrongly accused of witchcraft and drowned because of greed for land.
Here in Andalucía, Spain had its inquisition to, though the threat from the legacy of the Moorish past was far greater to Catholicism than that of the witches in the UK. Having said that Calvanism was born in Pendle. For the Fincas and small holdings here there is much more space and much more wilderness. Society here appears to be far less broken, families are more intact and in the developing gloom and dark of the winter night a community of adults still seem to control the streets and old people here look forward to a knock on the door.