When Julian Schnabel paints in Montauk, in the open, he only uses paint that is water-resistant, whereas in New York, in his studio situated in the penthouse of his palazzo Chupi (with Venetian-style façade, pink with 180 windows), he also uses ink. He continues his series of broken-plate canvases that he has been making since 1978, which he uses in his new paintings depicting the roses that grow near Van Gogh’s grave (on view in St.Moritz at his son Vito Schnabel’s gallery until March 8th). “It’s not a neo-impressionist work”, the artist says, returning to New York after many months in Europe. “These green painted plates look like leaves, and most of the paintings look like walls full of vegetation. The shards are also present in the portraits that I paint in person, the most recent of which was one of the artist Tom Sachs’s wife.” Doesn’t he consider the Holy Father a beautiful subject? “Yes, without a doubt. I love the popes represented by Tiziano, Velazquez, and Bacon.” How long does he take to paint a portrait? “64 years and ten minutes…Cy Twombly spent days and hours observing, and then he was very quick in his execution. There are paintings that I haven’t “resolved” in twenty years, but there’s not rush.” Next solo show is in Los Angeles at Blum & Poe, from March 18th to May 7th.