Contrasts 5: WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge

Examples of CONTRASTS from artwork currently on exhibit at the Cantor Art Center, Stanford University campus.

ALL artists succeed by working off contrasts:  contrasts of color, contrasts of shapes, contrasts of mediums (mixed media, collages, and so forth), contrasts of texture.

Here are three of self’s favorites:  Julian Schnabel.  Wayne Thiebaud.  Frank Stella.

Julian Schnabel, USA, b. 1951:  "Portrait of Hope Makler, 1989" at Cantor Art Center, Stanford campus

Julian Schnabel, USA, b. 1951: “Portrait of Hope Makler, 1989″ at Cantor Art Center, Stanford campus

Wayne Thiebaud, USA, b. 1920:  "Lunch Table, 1964" at Cantor Art Center, Stanford campus

Wayne Thiebaud, USA, b. 1920: “Lunch Table, 1964″ at Cantor Art Center, Stanford campus

Frank Stella, USA, b. 1936:  "Nightgown 1990" (On wall)

Frank Stella, USA, b. 1936: “Nightgown 1990″ (On wall)

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

Growing Up on Park Avenue (During the Depression)

The following passage is from Diane Arbus: A Chronology, 1923 – 1971.

Self stumbled across this book in April, after attending an Arbus exhibit at the Fraenkel Art Gallery, in downtown San Francisco.

In the summer of 1929, just before the stock market crash, Arbus’s family moved into 1185 Park Avenue.

This is from a radio interview conducted by Studs Terkel in 1968, for his book Hard Times:  An Oral History of the Great Depression.

The family fortune always seemed to me humiliating.  When I had to go into that store . . . I would come on somebody’s arm or holding somebody’s hand at what must have been a fairly young age and it was like being a princess in some loathsome movie of some kind of Transylvanian obscure middle European country and the kingdom was so humiliating.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

 

Extra Extra 4: WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge

On the train back to Dublin from Sligo, self’s last full day in Ireland:

The sky, of course:  the sky makes this picture.

The sky, of course: the sky makes this picture.

A painting by Janet Pierce, who self met at the Tyrone Guthrie Centre in Annaghmakerrig.  Janet’s paintings are currently on exhibit at the Hamilton Gallery in Sligo, through Aug. 9.

The window, of course: The window is the "something extra."

The window, of course: The window is the “something extra.”

The artist herself:

The "Something Extra":  The hand, the smile, the armful of yellow roses

The “Something Extra”: The hand, the smile, the armful of yellow roses

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

Seeing a Bird (After Leaving the Chester Beatty Museum)

DSCN5908

The Chester Beatty turns out to be right next to Dublin Castle (Dame Street, Stop # 9 on the Hop On/Hop Off red tour bus), and there is no admission fee.

Self loved the museum.  It’s possibly the most interesting museum she’s seen (yet) in Ireland.

It turns out to be highly focused on the book as a work of art.

There are many, many examples of Chinese, Japanese, and Arabic writing (calligraphy), some thousands of years old.

And there’s also one section on Moghul (Indian) art that seems to be highly focused on animals and all kinds of fabulous creatures.  And that’s why she spent much time photographing birds in a park afterwards.

Which led self to wonder if it was worth exploring the Dublin Zoo.  So just now she googled the Dublin Zoo and found that it is “Ireland’s most popular tourist attraction.”

Which is amazing, because self thought the Book of Kells would have been “Ireland’s most popular tourist attraction.”

The zoo has just welcomed its first “Rothschild giraffe calf.”  Which is amazing.  Not the part about welcoming the giraffe calf, but that the giraffe is actually called the “Rothschild giraffe.”

She wonders if, one day, she’ll see something about a “Wells Fargo elephant” in San Francisco Zoo.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

Twist 4: WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge

Shortly before leaving for Ireland, self wandered over to the Cantor Art Center on the Stanford campus, where she took these shots.  Gerald B. Cantor, who donated the funds, was someone self interviewed when she was just a lowly student reporter for The Stanford Daily.  You can actually see her byline if you go all the way back to the year the Cantor Art Center was opened.

The interview happened this way.  Mr. Cantor himself was standing on the steps of the Art Center.  A crush of reporters were holding microphones up to his face and yelling questions.  Since self is rather petite, barely even five feet tall, she was all the way in the back.  But she did have the perspicacity to yell, at the top of her lungs, STANFORD DAILY!

Mr. Cantor held up his hand.  Everyone fell silent.  Then he looked over at the crowd of reporters and asked, “Who said Stanford Daily?”  And self piped up, from all the way in the back, “I did.”

And he said, “Let her through.”

And the crowd of reporters parted.  And self, blushing furiously, was ushered all the way to the front.

And that, honest to God, is how self got to shake the great man’s hand.

Many, many years later, self thought of him again, because the Cantor Fitzgerald management company occupied the top three floors of one of the World Trade Center buildings, and sekf heard that the firm lost a stupefying 1,600 of its employees on 9/11.

Rodin Sculpture Garden, on the Stanford campus

Rodin Sculpture Garden, on the Stanford campus

A giant head in the Rodin Sculpture Garden (Behind is one of the engineering buildings)

A giant head in the Rodin Sculpture Garden (Behind is one of the engineering buildings, and they’re getting ready to add yet another)

Still another from the Rodin Sculpture Garden

Still another from the Rodin Sculpture Garden

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

 

 

 

Twist: WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge

This week’s WordPress Photo Challenge is TWIST.

Which is a deliciously challenging theme, obvio.u.s.ly !

The first one is a different kind of twist:  a serendipitous discovery in Culver City, California.

The next two are of actual twists: one in a piece of art, another found in nature.

Tara's Himalayan Restaurant, Culver City. Thanks much to Jennie and Andrew for taking her here! It was her first taste of Himalayan cuisine: funny she should find it in southern California, of all places!

Tara’s Himalayan Restaurant, Culver City. Thanks much to Jennie and Andrew for taking her here! It was her first taste of Himalayan cuisine: funny she should find it in southern California, of all places!

Tapestry by Filipino artist Ugu Bigyan. Self brought it home from the Philippines over 20 years ago. U.S. Customs asked her what it was, she answered "A hammock." They let it go.

Tapestry by Filipino artist Ugu Bigyan. Self brought it home from the Philippines over 20 years ago. U.S. Customs asked her what it was, she answered “A hammock.” They let it go.

This is what's left after the clematis petals have fallen off. SO beautiful.

This is what’s left after the clematis petals have fallen off. SO beautiful.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

 

 

Work of Art 4: WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge

Can you believe it will be summer soon? Summer is absolutely self’s FAVORITE time of the year!

A time to celebrate heat and being outdoors! In fact, summer would be absolutely perfect if she didn’t have to water!

Now to the WordPress Photo Challenge this weeek:  WORK OF ART.

A vintage car can be a work of art.  At least, it is treated as such by people in self’s corner of the world:

Annual Redwood City Fourth of July Extravaganza always includes an exhibit of vintage cars!

Annual Redwood City Fourth of July Extravaganza always includes an exhibit of vintage cars!

Last year, self spent a few weeks in Venice with Margarita Donnelly, long-time publisher of Calyx Press. She loved taking the vaporetto to the various outlying islands of the Venetian lagoon.  She visited Murano one evening, after all the tourists were gone.

Near the Vaporetto Stop in Murano

Near the Vaporetto Stop in Murano

Another example of outdoor art on Murano. This may be a Chihuly.

Another example of outdoor art on Murano. This may be a Chihuly.

Work of Art 3: WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge

Crossing the new San Francisco Bay Bridge:  Twilight, Spring 2014

Crossing the new San Francisco Bay Bridge: Twilight, Spring 2014.  Though the bridge has ALREADY been plagued with structural problems, self thinks it is a thing of singular beauty.

The signature of Dale Chihuly, Renowned Glass Sculptor, was on every print in self's Seattle hotel room:  February 2014

The signature of Dale Chihuly, Renowned Glass Sculptor, was on every print in self’s hotel in Seattle: AWP Conference, February 2014

The Charles Parsons Gallery in the San Mateo County Museum in Redwood City is full of the model ships Parsons made himself.  Self knows virtually nothing about the man.

The Charles Parsons Gallery in the San Mateo County Museum in Redwood City has 24 model ships by local resident Charles Parsons.  They are a marvel.  Self knows virtually nothing about the man.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

Work of Art 2: WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge

This week’s WordPress Photo Challenge is WORK OF ART.

The prompt begins:  “Art isn’t just painting and sculptures . . . “

Self is spending May at the Tyrone Guthrie Centre in Annaghmakerrig and she’s been writing with great concentration, every single day.  WOW.  It helps that every other artist here is working just as hard.

Her tally of short stories begun and revised in the last two weeks:  12.  Of which 4 are completely new — started from scratch after she arrived here.  She’s never been this productive and focused, ever ever ever.

This is next to the front door of my farmyard cottage in the Tyrone Guthrie Centre at Annaghmakerrig.

This poster hangs right next to the front door of self’s farmyard cottage in the Tyrone Guthrie Centre at Annaghmakerrig.  It’s such a nurturing place, self is so happy she decided to come!

The cook at the Tyrone Guthrie Centre is a wonder.  Self has gained weight here, no question.  Will you just look at one of her sumptuous desserts!  Her name is Lavina.  Self cannot explain how she has gone decades without hearing that name, and all of a sudden she’s seen a play — Titus Andronicus at The Globe — with a character named Lavinia. And no sooner had she arrived at the TGC than she was introduced to the cook, whose name is — Lavina.

Synchronicity, much?

Self had to ask the name of this dessert, which followed dinner one night:  It's a Pavlova.

Self had to ask the name of this dessert, which followed dinner one night: It’s a Pavlova.

The friends who drove her to the Tyrone Guthrie Centre, that first day, also took her to lunch at St. Kyran’s.  That was where self saw her first wild swans.  And afterwards, she heard a very sad story about a King whose children were turned into swans by their evil Stepmother.  They had to stay in swan form for 900 years.

Did you know that it is a crime to kill a swan here in Ireland?  There are six swans who live on the lake in the Tyrone Guthrie Centre.  One is a lone wolf, self frequently sees it with its behind in the air while it scavenges food from the lake.

St. Kyran's restaurant, on the way to Annaghmakerrig. The chef is Connor McCan. Self had duck. What an amazing concoction!

St. Kyran’s restaurant, on the way to Annaghmakerrig. The chef is Conor McCann. Self had duck. What an amazing concoction!  Holy Moly, how self’s girth doth grow here in Ireland!

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

Work of Art: WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge

The view from her skylight in the studio where she does all her writing features an ever-shifting canvas of fluffy white clouds against blue sky. Very painterly:

The Skylight of Self's Cottage in the Tyrone Guthrie Centre at Annaghmakerrig

The Skylight of Self’s Cottage in the Tyrone Guthrie Centre at Annaghmakerrig

It’s strange that they can get cactus to grow here where it’s so cold.  This horticultural arrangement is emblematic of a kind of Irish stubbornness, a refusal to submit to others’ stipulation of what’s possible:

Cactus in a Stone Planter Framed with Moss:  This intriguing arrangement is right by the back door to the Main House at the Tyrone Guthrie Centre.

Cactus in a Stone Planter Framed with Moss: This intriguing arrangement is right by the back door to the Main House at the Tyrone Guthrie Centre.

Finally, a celebration of Irish wit:

This amusing creation sits on a window ledge of the Main House.  When you examine it closely, you find that the body is made up of Guinness beer cans.

This amusing creation sits on a window ledge of the Main House. When you examine it closely, you find that the body is made up of Guinness beer cans.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

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