28 June 2015

Textile Art

Photo from TMC exhibition website.
Yesterday, a very rainy Saturday, we went to the Textile Museum of Canada to see their latest show. Entitled Artist Textiles: Picasso to Warhol, it is a large and beautiful exhibit of some the 20th century's greatest known artists' work in commercial fashion and furnishing textile design. I highly recommend catching this before it closes in October. I was stunned at the depth. Besides the very famous title artists there is Alexander Calder, Henry Moore, Dali, Matisse, Jean Miro and many more. Who knew they all designed for the fabric industry? 

I was particularly delighted to see one piece each by Duncan Grant and Vanessa Bell as I am currently reading a history of the Bloomsbury group. Isn't it funny how life offers up little coincidences like that? 

A point made in my current reading that is not mentioned anywhere in the TMC supporting text, is that these artists often undertook this type of work for the money. Ah yes, dirty lucre. It's easy to sneer at such "commercialism" but if not for it, we wouldn't have today viewing access to work of such wide ranging styles and periods in a boutique museum in a Canadian city. Of that I am sure.

Against the rules, I snuck a few photos. 

Upper left: Duncan Grant, Lower right: Vanessa Bell

I would look great in these. Just saying.

My fella's favourite: Pablo Picasso, Toros y Toreros, (1963) for Bloomcraft Fabrics. ©
Courtesy Target Gallery / Fashion and Textile Museum London www.ftmlondon.org

19 June 2015

My Birthday Trip

So, two weekends ago I passed another birthday and my fella took me on a little trip to celebrate.
I gather from rumour and hearsay that planning weekend getaways to celebrate the occasions of loved ones is a common occurrence. Well, in my first 50 years on this planet, such trouble had never been taken for me. Imagine my delight, my gratitude, my happiness. 

It was a simple trip. We decided to visit Kingston. Though we didn't know each other back then, we are both graduates of Queen's and thought it would be nice to see it again. On the way, we stopped off at a winery in Prince Edward County. In Kingston itself, we went for walks around town and campus, did some shopping, ate and drank. My favourite part of the trip? Sitting in the hotel lounge on Saturday evening overlooking the harbour, drinking wine and doing the crossword together. Yes it was a restful and cheerful and entirely special weekend. Happy birthday to me.

Norman Hardie Estates

The pizza oven at the winery.

Checking messages in Prince Edward County

Kingston limestone

Theological Hall, Queen's University: home of the Drama department.

The Chez Piggy courtyard from above

The view from our hotel.

10 June 2015

"Parenthetical" or "Poetry and A Pint"

So, if I hadn't mentioned it before, I had been internet dating on and off for the past couple of years. This is how I miraculously met the fellow I wrote about (around?) in this post. Now, be aware that I went on many, many first dates. I choose not to be that person who blogs about all the awful people out there. I actually found that most of them were not really awful but just real people, struggling, passing or failing, with at least the guts to try. One must approach these things with compassion, don't you think? I don't know if it's typical or not - the finding of a loved one through modern cyber dating. I'm just so darned pleased that it happened to me!

Another wonderful thing happened. I made a new friend!. I went on a couple of dates early last summer with a poet. He's a lovely, intelligent, graceful man but we just didn't click romantically. We've managed to keep in touch though. I took him to a theatre piece and he's introduced me to his world. Who knew Toronto had such a vibrant reading scene? 

There's a poetry zine called, (parenthetical): the zine, which is published by a young couple with enormous energy, love of the written word,  and good humour. It's fantastic! They call their enterprise Words on Pages. In conjunction with the journal, they also produce a reading series called Words on Stages, a bi-monthly event at a local bar. I've attended twice now as the guest of my friend. The Daughter has come with me. How amazing to listen to the open mic and featured readers. These are (mostly) young people who just love language and the way it sounds.The way it builds an idea. The way it creates a community of listeners and of readers. This is exciting stuff. And I feel welcome when I'm there. Being an audience member is to be an active participant. Oxford defines audience as "The people giving attention to something". Right?

Give attention to something.

To read my friend, R. Kolewe's latest poem and many other delightful pieces, click here.