Below is an excerpt from the April 2015 edition of GINNED! Magazine about Cotswolds Dry Gin. Every month, Craft Gin Club members receive a bottle of amazing small-batch gins accompanied by GINNED! Magazine which is full of features about the gin, the distillery and loads of fascinating features.
If it weren’t for a gaze out a window upon a serene Cotswolds landscape, the gin you are drinking this month may never have come to be. Dan Szor, the man doing the gazing, conceived the concept for his Cotswolds Distillery while sitting in the quiet of his country home staring out the window at the wind blowing the barley. As an entrepreneur finding inspiration with eyes fixed on nature through transparent glass, Dan finds himself in the company of many brilliant men and women throughout history including one peculiar artistic genius, Salvador Dalí.
In his lifetime, Salvador Domingo Felipe Jacinto Dalí i Domènech became known internationally as one of the most celebrated however eccentric artists, a recognition that continues to spread over twenty-five years after his death. His work inherently included travel and Dalí spent much time on the road opening exhibitions of his work in European and American capitals.
But despite his international acclaim and voyages, Dalí always maintained a close association with and love for his homeland of Catalunya, specifically the seaside town of Cadaqués which rests on a bay in the rugged Cap de Creus that juts out into the Mediterranean Sea not far south of the French border. Dalí referred to the town as “the best place in the world” and portrayed it often in his works with many representing the view of the landscape from his window, similar to how the Cotswolds Distillery keeps the essence of its region in its gin and how it originated with a view of the landscape out a window.
As Dan Szor first invested in a home in the Cotswolds for a place to take his family on the weekends to escape the city, Dalí’s parents brought his family to Cadaqués during the summers to spend their holidays. His love affair with the picturesque tourist spot was almost immediate. It is also in Cadaqués that a young Dalí fell in love with painting, a seemingly natural evolution for a boy described by as “precocious” and whose talent became quickly evident to family friend, Cadaqués artist, and early influence, Ramon Pichot Girones. As a thirteen year-old boy in 1917, one year after meeting Pichot, the budding artist was already painting masterful landscapes of Cadaqués such as 1921’s View of Cadaqués with Shadow of Mount Pani.
Dalí’s style evolved rapidly. His early works took considerable influence from the Impressionists as seen in View of Cadaqués, an obvious mimic of the style favoured by Pichot who traveled often to Paris and brought back examples for the budding painter. By the time he reached twenty, he had perfected his grasp of Cubism and translated this mastery into works portraying his favourite place such as 1924’s Port Alguer, Cadaqués.
The most renowned work of Dalí’s early years includes a 1925 Cadaqués landscape seen from the window of his family’s holiday home with a figure of a young girl leaning on the window. Entitled Figura en una finestra in the artist’s native Catalan, the cuadro’s human subject is Dalí’s younger sister, Anna María, the primary muse of his formative years. In her 1949 autobiography - which irrevocably damaged her relationship with her brother due to her less than flattering portrayal of his character - Anna María remembered fondly the “innumerable” sessions spent posing for her brother. She also expresses her admiration of the Catalonian landscape and highlights her brother’s inspiration that came from inside looking out when writing that she never tired of “looking at the landscape which from then on and forever was a part of me. Indeed Salvador always painted me near a window!”
For the rest of the article, download the April edition of GINNED! Magazine complete with all of the ginformation you need about Cotswolds Dry Gin.