Tuesday, December 28, 2010

"Please be careful" - a fascinating title

I just remembered a draft post I did a couple of weeks ago after discovering a painter via the wonderful blog INALUX. I must share this painting (and several others) with you because I was really taken on a journey with this artist's work. Inalux is Kristina Sostarko and Jason Odd ...  do go see their wonderful work!

Jeremy Miranda " Please be careful"
                                                               This is an original acrylic painting on panel -  8"x10" 
The painter Jeremy Miranda's title for this work really struck me. Its a poetic and whimsical work but the plea resonates loudly - or does so with me! I have notes with quiet alarm that tourism has increased massively to the Antarctic and I have to wonder about this need to go into fragile eco locations and take a heap of photos for what purpose exactly?
I certainly understand why scientists,  photographers on projects and such people go there... but tourists and mining companies I guess I put in the same category of "WHY?"
Jeremy Miranda: 'Icebergs and cruise ships don't mix well so please be careful.' See this other works at his Etsy site.

The following works are from his website:

pathway,  20" x 24"

houseboat,  20 " x 24 "

new growth,  46" x 44" 

untitled, 30 " x 26"

parlour,  54" x 50"

someday, 22" x 30"

If these works speak to you go have a look at the website images... I found them very compelling...   there seems a few very strong and quite different tendencies going on in his work and yet they marry so well... for me there's a lot to 'read' in them...

well...its still raining here...  there was a long dry spell this morning between drizzles and downpours. My brother and his wife however are in New York... holidaying!!!  JA had to cancel her birthday dinner booking on the 26th due to the snow storm... a bit sad... 50th birthdays are special ...still I'm sure they will long remember this one! They sent me this image this morning... which makes me grateful that I'm simply dealing with a bit of continuous wet weather .... nothing to complain abut here!

This was the view from their hotel or cafe.... not sure... but you get the picture! This is indeed a novelty for most of us in OZ!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY JA!!!! (like your bonnet!)

books, films and more rain...

I'm well and truly in holiday mode...  didn't start my day till I had finished my book,  breakfast was more like lunch ... then more reading ... then a visit to a bookshop and tonight the cinema! I bought a year's membership to the cinema club tonight! I live near a great cinema - Dendy Portside... and I decided in 2011 I have to see more films!
Its late now and a book awaits...but a quick visit to the blogosphere and I found a video at the wonderfully eclectic blog RECKON which I thought I'd share below. As a lover of circles and geometry why not? Also I'm quite a fan of the music of Philip Glass and recently enjoyed watching a lengthy documentary film on him late one night. 
In fact I was utterly captivated and found myself thinking back to memorable times like seeing his Opera Akhnaton performed in London in 1986. This had a considerable impact on my imagination... having long been sensitive to the connection between art and music. Seeing the first 2 films from the Qatsi trilogy after that (with Glass soundtracks) cemented this composer in my mind as one of enormous interest.

image from Koyaanisqatsi

I saw the film above when living in London, after seeing the Opera. Before London I'd been living on the NSW south coast in a town with a population in the hundred's.... where access to pristine environment was the reason many moved to live here. That contrast with London's millions could not have been greater really... so the film touched a raw nerve with me - much as I adored being in London! 
From the Qatsi website: KOYAANISQATSI, Reggio's debut as a film director and producer, is the first film of the QATSI trilogy. The title is a Hopi Indian word meaning "life out of balance." Created between 1975 and 1982, the film is an apocalyptic vision of the collision of two different worlds -- urban life and technology versus the environment. The musical score was composed by Philip Glass.

image from Powaqqatsi.

This film I saw almost 2 years later after travelling in Egypt and Israel...I was in tel Aviv at the time and  in a way I felt like the things Id been seeing on the streets,  particularly in Cairo,  had somehow seeped into this film. It had such a strong impact - one that worked its way deeply into my psyche!
Qatsi website: Where KOYAANISQATSI dealt with the imbalance between nature and modern society, POWAQQATSI is a celebration of the human-scale endeavor the craftsmanship, spiritual worship, labor and creativity that defines a particular culture. It's also a celebration of rareness -- the delicate beauty in the eyes of an Indian child, the richness of a tapestry woven in Kathmandu -- and yet an observation of how these societies move to a universal drumbeat.
POWAQQATSI is also about contrasting ways of life, and in part how the lure of mechanization and technology and the growth of mega-cities are having a negative effect on small-scale cultures.
The title POWAQQATSI is a Hopi Indian conjunctive -- the word Powaqa, I which refers to a negative sorcerer who lives at the expense of others, and Qatsi --i.e., life.

Geometry and circles - this was originally put together for Sesame Street. Its quite charming if you wish to watch it - 2 mins long!

Excerpt from Koyaanisqatsi

Excerpt from Powaaqatsi

This is the film I mentioned having caught on TV one night recently - called Glass : A Portrait of Philip in Twelve Parts. For 18 months the award winning director Scott Hicks followed the legendary composer.

To read notes from director Scott Hicks about the making of this film... click here.  Website: www.theglassmovie.com .

PS Thanks to Mlle Paradis for informing me the comments box was not working!

Friday, December 24, 2010


Tonight I actually went late-night shopping in the city ... coming home with a couple of books for gifts after some hours of gazing at things I did not need.... and resisting temptation. I finally got into the mood for such an evening! Its been a curious December...so much crammed into the first few days of the month with the exhibition at the Gardens... then a week or two of correspondances, sorting, catching up... and a couple of family get-togethers.
Then a 5 day trip to Melbourne that was quite wonderful... a post on that soon... and yesterday back home and into xmas mode - lunch with a lovely friend at an organic cafe and dinner for 8 at my home.
Today seemed to contain a long list of must do's and that's why the evening in the city eventuated.

I found this excellent sample of old wooden type put together for the festive season on a post at Anthology... Do pop over if you wish to read more about the talented Jen of Starshaped Press who produced prints for her Etsy shop. Read all about it here at Anthology.

Starshaped Press

Starshaped press

How did I get here... mmm....
I think it was clicking on an image of these braided rugs which took me here to ~>O<~ .
braided rugs

How did I get here?

Well.... that was by visiting the curious site - "intelligent clashing" which I found utterly compelling ... a kind of tumblr-like site. I got so engrossed in images on the 'intelligent clashing' site I have lost track of where I came from... here are more images!

Sheila Hicks

Thats uncanny...just clicking on this image on the I.C. website led me to the website of the artist I posted on last week in the previous post!!!

Louise Bourgeois

Louise Bourgeois - The Fabric Works

Always a big fan of Sonia Delauney

Sonia Delauney - from this blog.


Antonia Sellbach - more here.

Josef G - here.

Picture 6
found here.

Nicholas Nade 2008 - see more here.

Nicholas Nade - 2008

Nicholas Nade

Nicholas Nade

Katharine Trudzinski

Katharina Trudzinski - more here.


Serena Mitnik Miller

Serena Mitnik Miller -read more.

Ukkonen, 2009
Jenni Rope

Talon takana, 2009
Jenni Rope

Jangva Gallery, Helsinki 2009
Jenni Rope - Jangva Gallery, Helsinki

Puun takana, 2009
Jenni Rope - Puun takana, 2009 see here.

Bernard Frize - read here.

So .... here's to more intelligent clashing! Ive long been an admirer of the unpredictable in terms of color and composition. Its quite wonderful to be taken somewhere a little offbeat, the road less travelled!

Hope your festive plans are shaping up whatever that means for you. Quiet times here... relaxing and low key. No doubt Xmas morning will be spent writing cards Im just thinking I must start. I know... Im late! Best wishes all!
S x

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

How good is your memory!

Before I start in I'd like to acknowledge the new 'followers' who have come along lately ... welcome and thanks for connecting!
Recently I have been tagged, twice in fact ... first up by Mlle Paradis across the Pacific Ocean... and on the weekend by the Montreal based nathalie et cetera! Also  Mary Zeran from Iowa penned a post which actually makes me blush a little... beautifully put together for her 'discovering the world of art" blog. Take a peek here if you will!

Clouds of Calm , 8" x 8"x 2"
acrylic paint, acetate, masonite, pine, gel medium
Things that happen randomly or by accident.  The idea of layers, transparency, and our ability to examine things up close.  To work collaboratively  with a material.  Not forcing an outcome.  Being present to the experience.  Being in the moment. 

View Mary's website here to see more Artworks. 

Now to Mlle Paradis... I did find a moment to respond to her tagging and come up with a series of writers that have been influential in some way last week here....but what I didn't do is choose whom to pass it on to!  I really enjoyed the challenge of thinking about these writers... so I 'm keen to pass it on.

Before I got round to it Nathalie had tagged me with a very different kind of challenge - an 'I love your blog' award which required the answering of 10 questions:

The rules of the prize are:
Do a post with the prize
Answer the questions
Give the prize to 10 blogs

1. Why did you create the blog?
2. What kind of blogs do you follow?
3. Favourite makeup brand?
4. Favourite clothing brand?
5. Your indispensable makeup product?
6. Your favourite colour?
7. Your perfume?
8. Your favorite film?
9. What country would you like to visit and why?
10.Make the last question and answer to yourself:     

Nathalie did think some of us might balk at questions 3 and 5. Well.. yes... that could be so! But in the spirit of the silly season I'm thinking why not hybridize Mlle Paradis' great question on influential writers with these 10 questions above.

So...what would that hybrid version look like? ...something perhaps along these lines:

!. Name a fav book/writer that mentions blogging.
2. Name a blog you like that deals with books and writing.
3. Name a book/writer you're fond of that somehow features makeup.
4. Name a book/writer that deals with clothing.
5. Name a book/writer that talks of the indespensable anything.
6. Name a book/writer that you adore with a colour as a key motif.
7. Name a fav book/writer for whom perfume is a feature.(challenge 
   is to not go for the obvious one if possible!)
8. Name a fav book/writer which focuses on a film...or vice versa!
9. What country do your fav books/writers tend to hail from? egs..
10.What question would you like to make up about books and 
   writers... then answer.

Well I guess I could not blame you for reverting to one or other of the original tag subjects... influential writers or the first list of 10 questions above... but I wish to dare you to find answers for my hybrid challenge!!! Who wants to have a go? ...I'm going to tag various ones...but I invite you to enter into the silly season spirit and have a go if you come by and wish to take part. This is something you could even do on the night before xmas for a party game (joking) with a glass of whatever ... sherry, egg-nog, vodka?

Im going to try and answer these questions myself before I put it to you... so here goes!

1. books with blogging stories ...I can only think of the Julie and Julia book ...but i read it last year and did enjoy it!
2. A blog I like that deals with books and writing - I like to visit Slow Muse for the fact it introduces me to poets Ive not read before... and ideas that come from a broad ranging literary sources. There are others ... but thats a good start for me!
3. make-up... any ideas...anyone? Oscar Wilde?
4. clothing ... Jane Austin books come to mind... there must be many on this topic! Aesop "The lamb began to follow the wolf in sheep's clothing" (thanks google)
5. indespensible - clothes are crucial in some parts.“Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society'. Mark Twain
6. Colour - The film "three colours blue" just came to mind! For a book...well... any ideas out there.
7. Perfume - "Happiness is a perfume which you cannot pour on someone without getting some on yourself" Ralph Waldo Emerson
Trying to think of a book that has a scent or aroma that features.
Something is stuck in the back of my mind!
8. Film... mmm... these questions are hard... I need help... who made them up? Ben Okri's 'Arcadia' was a book about a painting which I rather liked. Film... any ideas?
9. Country of origin of fav books/writers - sometimes I have gone through stages of reading books from a particular place... Greece comes to mind and Scotland. Its a while since I did that though! 
10. Thank god I can make this one up... what books hold appeal when bedridden? Crime and Detective books - my mother gave me Agatha Christie to read when I was 14 and home ill from school. Its escapist for me... they come into their own at that time!

Well ... I barely scraped together answers here ... so of course you can do better than me...

And the blogs I'm choosing to tag:
Should you wish to respond to any of the three challenges - 
Passage Paradis , Mary Zeran , NathalieCaterina at La Dolce Vita, Janis at janis, Em at garden foolPriya at the Plum Tree, denise at grrl and dog, a paper snowflake, gloria freshly art and design, Jaci at blue china studio, Lucy at nourish me , Ro Bruhn ... and you! If you have time in this busy season please join in! 

PS If you can help out with question do leave a comment!

Im thinking maybe everyone is just too busy at the moment for this... but if you're feeling game....dont be shy! Alternatively come back to it after xmas... when you've been given a few books... or have thought of some !!!! Sorry Nathalie for paying havoc with a simple idea... You can tell that Ive technically "gone on holidays'  from the fact I could be bothered to do something this whimsical...I am off to Melbourne for 5 days late thursday... so a quick break down south is also making for the feeling of lightness after a long demanding period of concentration!
See you all,
S x

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Weaving as Metaphor

'Piedras de lana' 1990

Sheila Hicks 'Eventail' (fan) 1989 Paris

Cour de Rohan, Pas de mule, Paris
“Wow Bush / Turmoil in Full Bloom” 1980
Collection: The Philadelphia Museum of Art

Text from the website:

Among world civilizations, those of ancient Peru were probably the only ones that availed themselves to full extent of the latencies in textile arts. Not only did they succeed like others in elaborating richly decorated surfaces, but also they were unique in making bas-relief and even sculpture out of threads. Overcoming the neglect and oblivion in which these incomparable works have fallen, Sheila Hicks has retrieved and assimilated their tradition while marrying it felicitously to others such as those of Persia and India. Far from copying them, she has renewed them by original discoveries that appropriate them to the raw materials, the techniques and the aspirations of our time.
Her wall hangings have the living warmth and the thickness of fleece; their complex structure and their shadows seem to chisel out perspectives attributable only to dream palaces; they offer the mellow depth, radiance and mystery of the starry sky. Nothing better than this art could provide altogether the adornment and the antidote for the functional, utilitarian architecture in which we are sentenced to dwell. It enlivens it with the dense, patient work of human hands, and the inventive charms of a creative mind constantly stimulated by experiencing the gamut of those new materials which modern industry supplies, while remaining faithful to the immemorial rules of the most ancient perhaps of all the arts of civilization.
Claude Lévi-Strauss, Paris

“Baby Time Again” 1978
cotton, 9 x 20 feet
exhitition: Galerie Suzy Langlois, Paris
Galerie Carmen Martinez, FIAC

I was intrigued to come across this artist's work this morning and appreciate how enduring they are. The artist on her work:

"I found my voice and my footing in my small work. It enabled me to build bridges between art, design, architecture, and decorative arts." - Sheila Hicks

I had been visiting the delightful blog  'AT SWIM-TWO-BIRDS' when I came across artist Sheila Hicks at this post. I was attracted to the pages from her journal and then discovered a book on her work published in 2006. Not being at all familiar with her work it was a most fascinating introduction for me.

and pages from the book:




The Bard Graduate Center, Yale University Press
The designer of this book Irma Boom, won the gold medal for “Most Beautiful Book in the World” prize at theLeipzig Book Fair for this book.  (from Book by its Cover )

and finally....

    'May I have this dance'  - see website  here.