Monday, April 30, 2012

Artful April Recap

While I'm sad to see Artful April come to a close, I'm coming to realize that most of my monthly ambitions continue well beyond the 30 or 31 days. In some ways, the month serves as an intense study that creates a foundation that will hopefully serve me for the foreseeable future, and perhaps even a lifetime. And, in some cases, the month-long focus establishes a habit  I've also really enjoyed asking friends and new acquaintances about their favorite artists - I've learned from my friends and also learned more about them too.

April Recap:

Museums Visited (all new to me except for LACMA)
Art Created
  • Took photographs of Penny every day for a month
  • Made the project social by posting on Facebook
  • Project will live on! I have guest photographers lined up for the next several months
  • Finally, after years of wanting to, took a pottery wheel class
Online Explorations
Takeaway thoughts
  • I loved, loved, loved taking photos of Penny. I may take her with me in the future. 
  • I am even more intrigued with photography. I would love to continue: to explore, to learn, to create.
  • Considering a series of photographs like those of the 60's - something you could see taken backstage with the Beatles, black and white portraits, rock and roll style.... I have images in mind. 
  • I have an instant reaction to most art. I either love it immediately or I don't. 

Penny explores LACMA

April Showers

This month I had planned to focus on water conservation by taking shorter showers. But it turns out I already take short showers and I wasn't really willing to give up any more time. So, I had to research new ways to conserve water.

Best new strategy: I started flushing the toilet using a bucket of water from the shower. This is so simple! During my shower, I simply place a bucket in the shower to catch the run-off. Then, the next time I'm flushing the toilet, I pour the bucket of water into the toilet bowl. Done!

I started the month following the instructions of some websites which tell you to flush the toilet, then pour the bucket of water into the back storage basin. Totally unnessary and too many extra steps! Instead, you can pour the bucket (a standard bucket is exactly the right size) directly into the bowl, you don't have to flush the toilet since the gravity of the water initiates the flushing action on its own. Simple!

It's not exactly glamorous, but really easy and quickly became a habit.

Don't forget that being a vegetarian is one the best ways to save water - consumption of meat is an extraordinary waste of water!

Additional resources:
2013 Update: I kept up with this for almost a year, then I put the bucket away when guests came over. After the guests left, I forgot to put the bucket back out. What a ridiculously innane way to stop doing something that is easy and so good for the environemnet. And who cares if there is a bucket in the shower - maybe it can start a conversation to help spread the word. So, before writing this update, I placed the bucket back in the shower and I'm ready to start 2013 right!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

The purpose of art

capture the essence of a moment

                                    evoke an emotion, a reaction

    an experience

a way to transcend monotony, routine, reality

                                                             a pathway to a new understanding

       a representation of a culture, a people, an era

an embodiment of a soul, a life, a person

                                         a method to overcome, confront, witness a fear

to create stillness

                                               to press pause

       a therapy for the artist  /  a therapy for the observer


                   to witness, to participate

                                            to express beauty

a translation

                                                   to create / breathe / live


Penny Takes a Sirsasana

Monday, April 9, 2012

Artful April: lirpA luftrA

My blog seems to have disintegrated into a journal. Let the dissolution continue, or steer the writing back towards purposeful expression?

Leaning towards the latter, although that will take more time than I have today...

Ponder this: "You can't cross the sea merely by standing and staring at the water.” -- Rabindranath Tagore

Penny's bedtime

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Laguna Museum of Art

Again, another museum that has been on my list far too long. It's a small museum, but they had one spectacular exhibition from Victor Hugo Zayas. I walked into this gallery, and lost my breath. High ceilings, stark white walls, and I was alone... so that the art came alive in a way I hadn't anticipated. The walls featured giant canvases by Zayas - thick paint, texture, curves, motion - some urban some landscape. In the middle of the room, six sculptures of welded, black gun parts created organic limbs reaching for the sky. This room was so beautiful it made me wish I was a museum curator, it made me want to meet the artist, it made me want to create my own art, immediately.

Penny at the Beach

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Norton Simon

I love this museum. It's been on my list for a long time, so I was thrilled to visit today.
  • Countless Degas - sculptures, paintings, sketches
  • Picasso - Woman looking up from a book
  • Beautiful lily pad garden
Mesmerizing collection of Hindu and Buddhist sculptures, and the curator did an impressive job of showcasing these statues. The layout, design, and walls became part of the exhibit.