Archive for July, 2008

A candle lit

I am sick – in fact me and ALL the kids are sick. Is any poltical party promising sick leave for stay-at-home-mother’s? ‘Cos I would vote for that….Oh and I am going to have a GREAT post on fever-induced hallucinations when I am feeling better.

Anyway – there are people out there more in need than I so for my dear friends who I thought about a lot today – here’s the promised candle. I hope it went well.

Normal service will be resumed asap

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That will be all

This is all I have to say today

From the streets of Ann Arbor MI

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Where’s the art?

You may have noticed that visual art has been thin on the ground here lately. I haven’t been able to put my finger on it but today I came across this article about “reader’s block

Alain de Botton, writes “I often go through periods when I feel a need to take stock, think and generally not read very much. My mind isn’t blank, just too dense with thoughts that need untangling.  Sometimes I can’t “get into” any books, usually because I’m at a stage of forming a set of interests. So I feel as if nothing interests me, when in fact, I’m just growing into an interest. Forcefeeding books is as risky as forcefeeding food. One has to let the appetite arise naturally – and the constant pressure to read new prizewinning books can give one an unhealthy sense of guilt about periods when the mind is just idle – as it needs to be regularly to digest experiences.

So I think maybe I have the visual art equivalent – “viewer’s block“, I just don’t want to look at anything and am feeling quite jaded. I can tell, because I committed a contemporary art ‘crime’ this week when reading John Hurrell’s review of Richard Maloy: Yellow Grotto/Raw Material at Sue Crockford and going “Oh for goodness sake – really”. How close-minded of me, but butter? I mean really? Some post-modernist comment on globalism and corporate giants like Fonterra – or just butter? I am just too tired to think about it.

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Following on from yesterday’s theme – I found this today

From: Into The Wider World(link is a .pdf) by Brian Turner

I have decided I really need to get out and see some more exhibitions. The old petrol price has prevented me going very far but I NEED to see the Rita Angus thing and I am supposed to be going into town for catch up with friends and maybe dinner in early August so maybe then and I can kill many birds with one stone – or shotgun – or something….

Dead Birds and Hunting Gearby Willem van Aelst

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One of the nicest things about blogging is that there appears to be a real sense of community. I have met the coolest people here (sorry for sounding dated) and have had supportive of communications from the most unexpected places when I have delved into the trials of life here. Thanks guys!!

It also makes me concerned when my favourites bloggers disappear (like Poneke did briefly earlier this year) and when you read things like this on Peter Peryer’s blog. I just hope they cruel grey of an Alexandra winter hasn’t got to him. And if you want to know about that – read this from Brian Turner(for a limited time) – a lovely piece of writing. And I was there living in Central in the winter of 1991!

“A spectacular frost occurred in Otago in early July 1991 when overnight air temperatures dropped below -15°C – for days in some places. The effect was chaos. Beer froze in pubs, water pipes burst, diesel turned to sludge, and rabbits with frostbitten ears were accused of cannibalism on national television. Exposed metal (such as gates) became so cold that skin froze to it on contact.” Personally we were able to ice skate down our gravel road.

Hoar frost on pruned fruit tree

But I digress (and am getting all nostalgic again).

One thing that I found today that made me feel not so old was this great interviewwith the photographer Martha Cooper (now in her 60s) about her work photographing graffiti and street art. The interview is 12 minutes long but worth the watch.

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Collector – or hoarder?

I was quite taken with the quotes on collecting at Over the Net today including

“it seems to function there as a trophy acquired in a foreign land, as if it had been bagged during an art safari.”Artist, Fred Wilson

When I think of art collections I tend to imagine the Paris type rather than anything more polished which fits the above quote to a degree. But I am in the process of “deaccessioning” a whole lot of my collection (otherwise known as chucking out crap) which got me thinking. I must note that I don’t collect art but “mid century design” items. I just find 1960s pyrex cheerful ok? And who can’t smile at Languouste Carlton Ware? There was a time where everything I owned fitted in a Holden station wagon and maybe that was a better plan. So where is this going?

Well – collecting – what IS that about? I mean there is nothing wrong with it but what’s behind the compulsion to have STUFF? I had an old National Geographic and they had photographed families from all around the world who they’d got to empty the contents of their houses out front. It went from a few blankets and a cooking pot to the “all Amercian dream”.  So when you are anticipating moving house and in your clearing out you find a t-shirt you last wore in 1987 – well that’s just wrong – even if it does have sentimental value.

So where does collector end and hoarder start? Apparently its more to do with what you are collecting. Collect = quality, hoard = quantity? I know my hoarding is genetic and something I fight against but I compulsively collect. I must have ALL XXX’s books, ALL YYY’s CDs. I would be a monster if I actually ever turned to art collecting with any seriousness.

Maybe Rouseeau would be ok if on an art safari?

NOTE: This post probably makes no sense at all as it was brought to you via a pounding headache (it’s the thinking about moving again that’s doing it)

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Well life has been getting in the way of writing again – which is a worry because I have to get some sort of short story out by the 1st of August!

Seems winter is a time of discontent and most people I’ve come across lately seem to be in a sort of slump for real or imagined reasons (myself included) but while hunting for something else I found this little bright spot – Project Legit

The aims of the project are to work proactively with taggers or those at risk of tagging and move them towards legal avenues of expressing their art form. Teenagers…undertake the three-week Project Legit course, designed to educate the youth on the history, theory, ethical and practical aspects of graffiti art.”

Inclusion rather than exclusion – I like it. But then I guess I am a “bleeding heart liberal” of the type that think about sitting down and disarming their adversaries over tea and cake. Not something Richard would have done I bet.

King Richard III (unknown artist ) – Cirgarette Card

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