Thursday, July 24, 2014

FRANCE (204/365 DAYS, 4.0)

the French team performing last night at the 
International des Feux Loto-Quebec de Montreal
had a commendable idea 
by wanting to make an homage to Nelson Mandela
his life, and his idea of what a nation is capable to become.  
I was a little uncertain how this might translate 
but I looked at the soundtrack they were planning to use for the evening, 
and some names were familiar 
and hinted as to where they were going with their idea. 
It seemed promising. 
The beginning was a little timid and I feared the worst... 
but never sell the French too swiftly. 
They had a few tricks up their sleeves!! 
If it appeared shy and a tad too conceptual to start with, 
it quickly evolved into a magnificent display that maintained grace throughout 
while finding the gusto to dazzle and illuminate the sky.


"France [International des Feux Loto-Quebec de Montreal 2014]"


"France [International des Feux Loto-Quebec de Montreal 2014]"


"France [International des Feux Loto-Quebec de Montreal 2014]"

I've become quite curious about these square little things... 
I sure would like to know how these came about.


"French Savoir-Faire "

After looking at hundreds upon hundreds of pictures of fireworks 
these last few weeks, 
one might say my mind is starting to wander off... 
On a few occasions I played with my camera for various effects. 
Here above, 
all you see is like a double exposure done on Photoshop, 
but I like the effect.


"French Seduction [Bokeh]"

Ah, 
who could ever say "No!!" to bokeh!?! 
The fireworks I focused on here 
are generally difficult for me to get interesting results, 
but with just a twist of the lens, 
and voila!! 
Something intriguing emerging from darkness. 
I fondly remembers moments like that...


"French Connection [Freelensing]" 

As the title suggests, 
something to blow a few synapses 
by freelensing this shot 
and leave the mind in a psychedelic daze. 

There is one competitor left, 
from Australia, 
and they better perform flawlessly 
because I feel I've already pick my favorites for this competition. 
But let's not be hasty!! 
Nothing would please me more 
than to have a new favorite 
to further complicate my final choice... 
In the meantime, 
I'd like to say 
Merci 
to the French team for their performance.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

ODD FINDS (203/365 DAYS, 4.0)

You probably know this feeling, 
the one you get when you are confronted with some artwork, 
and your initial response is: 
 WTF?!? 
Modern Art often gets that kind of response from many, 
even if some would always deny this... 
I'm not one of those 
and am more than willing to admit 
that some artwork just fly over my head 
and leave me completely clueless. 

I will not write anything further, 
except to identify the piece and artist and date of production. 
You tell me what you think... 
for a change!!


"Old Enemy, New Victim [Tony Matelli, 2006]" 


"I Learned The Hard Way [Mickalene Thomas, 2010]"


"Getting Ahead [Rachel Harrison, 2005]" 


"Elle (She) [Genevieve Cadieux, 1993]"


"Between Flesh and Shadow [Bruno Laliberté, 2014]" 

Inspired by the previous piece, 
I did a few things to the image, 
and my interest in this is this: 
What happens to the space between flesh and shadow? 
Is it just empty space, 
or is there some kind of magnetic field or something alike? 
Must we get esoteric to find a connection here, 
or should we just give up right away 
and believe that absolutely nothing exists there? 
I think I'd be good at modern art. 
I can find ways to justify my work. 
Isn't that how it goes? 
Don't kill this boy's dream, please!?!

Anecdote: 
A long time ago, 
in a galaxy far, far away, 
I went with friends to see a fashion show happening in an art gallery, 
so that a designer and her friends could display their work together. 
While the fashion show was interesting 
and set to the music of Dead Can Dance, 
whom I love[!!!], 
the various art works, well, 
let just say that, 
if some were good, 
some others, 
not so much... 
But I was brutally confronted to modern "art" by one of the artists 
when he was offended because I had [apparently] stepped on one of his pieces. 
I was befuddled/gobsmacked/dumbfounded/incredulous!!! 
When I looked down at what he was hysterically pointing at from across the room, 
possibly trying to shame me, 
all I saw was a sheep skin on a piece of plywood, 
the kind of skin you could find back then at Ikea 
and the plywood, well, any hardware store would do just fine... 
I kept staring at the piece and back at him, 
back to the piece then back at him; 
then I pointed to the thing and looked at him, 
my bewildered eyes clearly asking him 
"You mean this thing is yours?" 
"This thing?!?"  
"Really, this is YOUR piece of art?" 
"You're kidding me, right!?!" 
And when he saw me pointing my finger at it, 
he nodded his head with defiant pride, 
expecting me to back off apologetically, 
surely!! 
I laughed... 
Oh, [my] ignorance is bliss!! 
Perhaps the guy became famous since then, 
perhaps not for this specific piece, 
but for something else, maybe?!? 
(Or he ended up doing some telemarketing somewhere).
For the whole time we were there, 
I kept on walking near the thing, 
just to keep the guy on the edge... 
I tell you, 
modern art is perhaps not my forté; 
or maybe, 
some things are not "art" at all, 
but just some junk thrown together by some pompous b.........d. 
Alright, 
I'm just being mean and judgmental, 
and I like it!! 
That guy pissed me off with his pretension and his attitude. 
I've always believed and was told often enough that I had good taste. 
And the reason I've shown you these four pieces 
from one of the galleries at the Musee des Beaux Arts de Montreal 
is because I believe they are worth a look. 
A good talk with the respective artists, 
over coffee or scotch, 
would be needed to gain a fuller appreciation of their work. 
But nevertheless, 
they have piqued my curiosity, 
and the craftsmanship in their work is undeniable, 
even if the meaning remains cryptic to me. 
I'll feature less cryptic works in the days to come.
BTW: 
To this day, 
I find sheep skins horrible...

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

MY WISH LIST (202/365 DAYS, 4.0)

Awh, 
if only I were rich!!!... 
My tastes can be quite eclectic 
and I'll prove it today. 
Here's what I would put on my wish list:


"The Throne Room [Dorian Fitzgerald, 2009]" 

This is a very large painting that graces the whole back wall of a gallery at the museum 
and it makes quite the [favorable] impact [on me].


"Bust [Guglielmo Della Porta, 1550-70]" 

I would gladly pair this sculpture with the previous painting. 
This mix of bronze and marble is remarkable 
and I find it has an almost modern aspect 
even though it dates back to the 16th century. 
Some might think I consider this my role model 
for the lack of hair on his/my head 
and the great beard as well, 
of which I am extremely fond of... 
His and mine!!


"Sky Cathedral [Louise Nevelson, 1977]"

Seeing this here gives me the giggle, 
because it reminds me of a time when life had me face a panel of people 
who declined any knowledge of Ms Nevelson. 
While her works sits [proudly] in museums, 
those people will remain unknown or obscure artists [at best], 
remembered only for the mediocrity of their minds. 
But then, 
those are the same people who didn't know who David Hockney or Franco Zeffirelli
I just can't suffer small minded people. 
Apparently, 
they couldn't suffer my ignorance of the local scene... 
I guess it was fair, 
somehow... 
even if I didn't like the outcome of that interview.


"Satyr [Pietro Tacca, 1577-1640]" 

A lovely piece 
and I'd chose this not without some cynicism 
as some might expect me to turn into one at my age... 
But, alas, no!! 
I do not yearn for fresh young flesh... 
Just some middle-aged guy would do just fine!!


"Austria III [Jean-Paul Riopelle, 1954]"

As I've mentioned before, 
Riopelle would be a must!!!


"Blue Drops [Paul-Emile Borduas, 1955]" 

And that ain't bad either, 
wouldn't you agree?!?


"Jason Charming the Dragon [Salvator Rosa, 1665-70]" 

Being an avowed Arthurian for as long as I can remember, 
anything related to medieval mythology at large connects with my own affinities, 
as attested by the painting above, 
and the one below.


"St George and The Dragon [Briton Riviere, 1908-09]"


"Crown of Flowers [William Bouguereau, 1884]" 

Of course, 
I'm a total sap for Bouguereau!! 
'Nough said!!... 
Since I'm not rich, 
my last resort would be to sleep at the museum to be permanently surrounded by such beauty. 
But my only [logical] option remains to renew annually my subscription 
to get free access to all of these. 
I do try to be sensible about these things, 
but one can still dream...
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