©2015 Joy Makon. Not to be reproduced without permission.

Travelogue: Marble, Fur & Stone

The feral side of Ephesus, Turkey.

Last summer I was fortunate to travel throughout the Mediterranean and spent a memorable day at the Greco-Roman tourist mecca of Ephesus, Turkey. At the port at Kusadasi we were met by our private guide for the 1/2-hour drive to the site. We passed through rolling hills of olive trees and bypassed the out-of-place Aqua Fantasy Aquapark before arriving at the gateway to Ephesus, the farming town of Selçuk.

Vacation pix: the "Library" dating back to 117 A.D.

Vacation pix: the Library was used as a mausoleum for Tiberius Julius Celsus Polemaeanus, circa 117 A.D.

Scholars, explorers and grad students have been excavating Efes for over 160 years and only a fraction of the area has been unearthed. As is true for most of the region, many religious and political pasts converge here and can be experienced by walking among ancient ruins and active archeological digs. The sheer quantity and scale of structures made me feel humbled. Imagine that every stone shard and fragment has been used to painstakingly piece together immense facades, colonnades, retaining walls, roofless buildings. Nothing is solid, nothing matches, very little is intact, yet so much has been constructed to recreate the different societies that once thrived here.

What will I paint from here? Ferns, vines, flowering plants have nestled in the cracks of masonry adding pretty touches of color that soften the hard edges. Colonies of feral cats enjoy hanging out on the sun-heated rocks. Back in my studio, as I’m waiting for a snowmaggedon of a storm to hit NYC, I recall the intense, energy-sapping heat of the day in Ephesus. The brilliant blue of the sky. The shaggy mix of stone, clay, dust. I love this sweet kitty—the marble and stone are just as interesting—and boy I have a lot of textures to explore.

January 2015
Arches cold press, 300 lb, 10″ x 10″

This entry was published on January 27, 2015 at 1:25 pm. It’s filed under Home, landscape, Summer, Uncategorized, watercolor and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

5 thoughts on “Travelogue: Marble, Fur & Stone

  1. Sharman Yoffie-Sidman on said:


    What a phenomenal picture you painted. The colors are delicious, and the detail that you put in to the rocks the marble the cat believes is just amazing. Everyone of the pictures you do astounds us more than the previous one. Keep it up because you’ve got a gift.

    Love, Alan and Sharman


  2. Beautiful Joy! I love how the textures of the stone and the kitty contrast, but work so well together.

    Since we had a NOmageddon, get thee to the park and paint some more from there. I love your Park Paintings. Be on the lookout for all those cardinals. Maybe I’ll see you up there one of these days. 🙂

    • Joy Makon on said:

      Hi Carol, I foud those cardinals yesterday near the pagoda by the skating rink, and think it may be the next painting.

      • Can’t wait for a cardinal painting. And also look for the red tailed hawk. I’ll ask my husband where we were when we saw him. My husband’s seen him again in the same spot.

  3. Very, very creative. …and I just can’t think of this sweet kitty as feral. In my mind, I have to give her a home. I think you did a great job with the stone. Your use of color always is fascinating. Love it!

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