Foolish Things

  • As a result of dropping by the Robert Frank exhibit at the Cantor Art Center on the Stanford Campus yesterday, self got it into her head that she would very much like to own a Leica.
  • After leaving the Robert Frank exhibit, self fully intended to go to Aquarius in Palo Alto and watch Rory Kennedy’s “Last Days in Vietnam.” But she did not.  Instead, after filling up with gas, she went home.  And today — alas! — that film is no longer showing.
  • Self hasn’t looked at her story “The Peacock.”  Not once.  Not since it was workshopped at Squaw. She has no idea what to do with that story. It just sits there, like a lump on a log. Taking up space in her computer. In her store of unfulfilled projects. She wanted it to be a memoir about her and Dear Departed Sister-in-Law Ying. She wanted it to be desperate and lonely, the voice of a soul lost in the Cambodian wilderness after failing to connect with the splendor that is Angkor Wat (Dear blog readers, do you know that there’s a RAFFLES HOTEL IN SIEM REAP???)
  • Self has wanted to replace the desert of the front lawn with trees — perhaps olive trees — to screen her house from the busy street. But she’s remained staring at that patch of bare, weed-choked dirt for 10 years. It sounds really lame to keep bringing up the drought.

Ugh, ugh, girl. Why can’t you just do? Why must you always be re-hashing the old, or rehearsing for the future? To what end?

How quickly you forget: just yesterday, you got word from Witness that a piece you sent them eight months ago is going to be in their Translation issue.

As for somehow missing “Last Days in Vietnam,” “Gone, Girl” is showing in the Redwood City Century 20 and she heard from a friend who read the book that it’s actually pretty good. Self is not a Ben Affleck fan — seems he is pretty much a control freak with his wife, and no doubt he took care to present himself in the best possible light in this new role — but what the heck? Maybe she just wasn’t in the mood for another hard-hitting documentary yesterday, maybe she should just try and ignite a new respect for Ben Affleck? She did like “Argo” a lot. He’s not a bad director.

And if she’d managed to watch “Last Days in Vietnam” yesterday, she would have missed seeing the San Francisco Giants’ nail-biting victory over the St. Louis Cardinals. She would have missed seeing the way the two teams went head to head all the way to the 9th inning. She would have missed that sweet, game-ending homer.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Still More Dreamy in Magalang, Pampanga

Self spent the weekend poring over her pictures from last year’s sojourn to Magalang, Pampanga, where she was invited to address students of Pampanga Agricultural College.

She wouldn’t have looked back if it hadn’t been for this week’s Daily Post Photo Challenge, posted Friday: DREAMY.

Words from The Daily Post prompt:

real but not-real; silent, peaceful, perfect

House of E. Aguilar "Abe" Cruz in Magalang, Pampanga

House of E. Aguilar “Abe” Cruz in Magalang, Pampanga

DSCN2026

The house of “Abe” Cruz is clearly a house that was designed by an artist. Each door, window, and screen has its own unique pattern of metal fretwork. LOVE.

The first floor of the house has been turned into a kind of museum, filled with family memorabilia and art. Self has no clue who the model was for this bust, but if she were to take a guess, she'd say it was Abe Cruz's wife.

The first floor of the house has been turned into a kind of museum, filled with family memorabilia and art. Self has no clue who the model was for this bust, but if she were to take a guess, she’d say it was Abe Cruz’s wife. Interesting, the woman’s face isn’t exactly beautiful but it’s a very strong face. The cheekbones!

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

Diane Arbus in the Year 1928

from Diane Arbus: A Chronology, 1923 -1971, by Elisabeth Sussman and Doon Arbus:

In September, following in her brother’s footsteps, she enrolls at the Ethical Culture School on 63rd Street and Central Park West, a progressive private school begun by Felix Adler, founder of the Ethical Culture Society (1878). Originally known as The Workingman’s School, it emphasizes moral education, psychological development, teacher training, and the integration of “manual arts” with academics. The academic curriculum is designed to parallel the evolution of human civilization, from tree dwellers to contemporary society. Students in each grade study their subjects through the lens of a particular time period and culture.

The school is still in existence! Self just googled. Here’s the link. The name’s been modified but the address is the same.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

 

More Silhouettes

Grand Central Baking Company, Pioneer Park, Seattle:  February 2014

Grand Central Baking Company, Pioneer Square, Seattle: February 2014

Hand-blown glass, The Glass House near Pioneer Square, Seattle:  February 2014

Hand-blown glass, The Glass House near Pioneer Square, Seattle: February 2014

Neighbor's Front Yard, Redwood City, December 2013

Neighbor’s Front Yard, Redwood City, December 2013

 

Silhouette 3: Los Angeles County Museum of Art

The Daily Post prompt says:  “Photography is all about experimenting with light, and then positioning yourself (or your subject) in the right spot to achieve a certain effect.”

To honor the theme of this week’s Photo Challenge, SILHOUETTE, self decided to take this photo of a Pieta from the side, so that we don’t see the grieving mother’s face (She forgot to note the name of the artist. But the other pieces in the gallery ranged from the 15th to the 17th century)

Pieta: European Art Collection, LACMA

Pieta: European Art Collection, LACMA

Across the street From the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, a onstruction zone was demarcated with a green plastic wall. Through it, you could see the silhouette of palm trees.

Across the street From the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, a onstruction zone was demarcated with a green plastic wall. Through it, you could see the silhouette of palm trees.

Palm Trees in Front of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art

Palm Trees in Front of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art

Listmania: Six Recently Bookmarked/ 12 Existing Tags

*     *     *     *

Naomi Watts *  Oliver Stone * Owen Wilson * Patrick Leigh Fermor * Paul Theroux * Peter Sarsgaard * Pico Iyer * Rebecca West * Ruth Rendell * Sarah Waters * Siquijor * Tom Hiddleston

Zigzag: WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge

The WordPress Photo Challenge this week is Zigzag:

The instructions are to “share a photo that foregoes the straightforward in favor of the twisting and winding.”

(After pondering the three photographs from her archives, self realizes they are more about “crosshatchings” than about zigzags.  The WordPress Daily Post instructions seem to be asking for photos of “crooked,” and none of the below are that.  Oh well, she’ll just keep trying.)

Photo # 1 is a sketchbook belonging to one of the Squaw Valley Writers Conference participants.  During readings, she’d busy herself sketching and drawing and coloring.  Below is a sample page of her sketchbook.  There’s a lot of cross-hatching in the depiction of the trees, which is why self chose this photo as her first “Zigzag” entry:

Sketchbook Belonging to a Squaw Valley Writers Conference participant

Sketchbook Belonging to a Squaw Valley Writers Conference participant

Self took Photo # 2 on a recent visit to son and Jennie in Claremont.  Jennie and self were wandering around a mall when self saw this interesting ceiling. For sure, there are lots of zigzags depicted here!

Mall Interior, Montclair, Southern California

Mall Interior, Montclair, Southern California

Finally, here are some zigzagging stage lights at the Button Factory Music Centre in the Temple Bar section of Dublin.  Self was attending a fundraising benefit in which one of the musicians she got to know at the Tyrone Guthrie Centre was performing.

Self attended a fundraising concert at the Button Factory in Dublin, in June.

Self attended a fundraising concert at the Button Factory in Dublin, in June.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

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.

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