Photographs and memories

For the past 800 years, if the tree could talk, it would be able to tell us what it has witnessed on better days. For the tree to still stand and withstood the foibles of humanity, nothing is better than getting a good hug from it.

Dante Alighieri is another example who has seen better days. When he was exiled from his hometown, Florence, he was heartbroken. His heartache drove him to write the famous Divine Comedy.

In Canto 5, Dante met Francesca de Polenta. She said to Dante:

There is no greater pain
than to remember happy days
in days of misery.

Francesca committed adultery and was put in the circle of lust. She discovered that her happiness having a forbidden love is now her misery.

This year, we are celebrating the 700th year of Dante. What a better year to delve in his work as a poet and a pilgrim while we ride the wave of pandemic. So I joined reading 100 Days of Dante. It would go on until Easter 2022, by then we are hoping the malaise of the society has very little negative effective in our mental health.

When I think of better days, I think of a plum and prune.

What did the prune say to a plum?

I’ve seen better days.

Expression

At the school setting, ask the students to express their nightmares. The EYE seems to be common in their artwork.


night·mare
the difference between you and i is when you have a nightmare you wake up and it ends
i wake up to get to school to relive my nightmare
the nightmare of seeing him
of feeling his presence
the honest to God fear he has me under is driving into insanity
i could use millions of words and not one could describe my hatred and fear


who i am?
where did this feeling come from
did it arrive after i understood the effect this will have
not understand leaves me wondering
clueless to the way this will follow me to my death bed
as i lay my head down to die
the flashes of images and emotions will fill my soul once more
nightmare


nightmares are real
just different from what i thought about as a kid
i used to think monsters lived under my bed
now i know they live within people
they bring you into washes
they rob you
they lie
they ****
they hurt
i am done letting him control me
i say that often
i say those words every time i see him
or when i need strength


i just need to repeat it enough times so i will start believing it
lord help me
live a life full of dreams not nightmares
i want more
i desire
desire is a fire that depends on power
power at which i don’t contain
powerthirst on control from others because of a lack oneself
the emotional security one can not give feeds into anger
mistakes are failed risks that seem to have this hold on our souls as if that has the power we have been searching for
so mistakes are our minds negative power
then successes are our positive power
nothing makes sense


we are flawed humans stitched up with cravings
these cravings can be used for glory or for the evil that we conform to
we should use the craving to move us out of the darkness instead of pain
we should push to the happiness that is reachable
we refuse to do what we were called to do
nightmare
the nightmare i can not wake up from
a life i did not choose but can not awake from

Poem by VOID

Attention Seeking

Come on let’s get happy or angry, we may be able get what we want.

Since the word scot free is of Scandinavia origin, SKOT, meaning tax or payment, it reminded me of an angry child statue in Norway. Of all the statues in the park, created by Gustav Vigeland made Oslo famous in Norway. The artist agreed to donate all originals of previous and future artistic work to the city, as long as it would provide him with a place to live and work.

Quid pro quo.

Remembering Heart Surgery Blues

G.A. Miller sketched his self-portrait when he had a heart surgery, titled My Golden Colorado Days. Not only can he draw, he’s a singer as well. A good one I must. say.

GAM thank you for putting this all together for me. Much appreciated. Seeker.

To listen to the heart surgery blues song, please visit my post here.

Six Women at the VAG

As the old saying goes, a good teacher shows you where to look but doesn’t tell you what to see.

Six women by Bharti Kher at VAG

An artist paints. The viewer looks and searches to find meaning in what they see. Texture. Color. Emotion. Intellect. Don’t let the artist’s thoughts change your views.

In black and white, seeing the world without colors helps me see the raw emotion in front of me. Colors emit mixed emotions. Red for anger. Blue for serenity. Yellow for mellow.

Having six women looking at a panel of painting will result to different emotions.

Six women by Bharti Kher at VAG

Obscuring their faces to concentrate on their body postures and contours will also ignite our feelings. Neck. Shoulders. Breast. Abdomen. Hands. Legs. Feet. Nakedness. Age.

And I thought they must have been very good looking when they were younger and elegant with clothes on — my, my, how our body changed. Many women are so proud of their bodies. Taking the utmost care to appear sexy. I was once like them. Full of vanity. In my aging body, mine is no different than theirs.

Six women by Bharti Kher at VAG

These are life-size plasters of women that appear to be meditating. This is my interpretation. No meaning. Sometimes, I prefer it that way. I don’t want to know. I am afraid to know. Fear seems to be the strongest emotion.

It’s better to play a game in my head.

Who are these six women. What if I call them female. Is being a female the same thing as a woman. What if one is not really female. Is the man trapped in a female body? Did the man have a sex change?

How about six generations. Which one is the great grandmother, grandmother, mother, daughter, granddaughter, niece? Do they all live together? What kind of relationship do they have? Healthy? Loving? Caring? Obedient?

Ah, that sounds much better. My emotion is starting to feel positive.

Six women by Bharti Kher at VAG

I am so glad that these figures are colorless.  Devoid of race.  

How close was my imagination, I wonder. 

In every artwork, there is a brief description that I read last so that it will not influence my thoughts.  And it reads:

Six Women, 2013-15
plaster, wood, resin
Courtesy of the Artist and Hauser & Wirth

In her most recent work, Six Women, Bharti Kher cast the bodies of female sex workers living in Kolkata (formerly Calcutta), the capital of India’s West Bengal state and home to one of the country’s largest brothel-based sex industries.  The women were paid by the artist to sit and be cast in plaster by her.  These six individuals provide not only an arresting and unapologetic representation of the aging female body as a counterpoint to social pressures to stay forever young, but they also serve as witnesses to the disregard for women who have obliged the patriarchy.

Cultivating Creativity

Most of my topic is about gardening. Gardening involves a lot of cultivation that includes my whole being. It’s my way of being creative. Planting a seed and let it bloom is the best part.

Manobo boy and his Kudyapi

Don’t even think that this is Picasso. No siree. My brother painted this originally on a canvass. I challenged him to paint it on my leather jacket. And he did and not doing it again for anybody. I proudly wear this jacket and advertise his work.

Hills Where the Lord Hides

My brother and I seems to get along well when it comes to being creative in our own ways. He paints and sends me photos of his work-in-progress. I take a good look at his work, critique and provide my observation. I enjoyed writing about this piece “Hills Where the Lord Hides.”

Me: Beautiful landscape with blended colours that makes us follow the solid ground towards the Hill. Magnifique.

Him: Thanks for noticing, good eye!

Me: One has to really think and feel what the painting is for me, not just the eye. I could easily say something simple which is boring … tee hee

Him: It’s the eye that senses the painting. Then you feel and think.

Me: Not to mention the horizon is stunning that complements the rest of the painting. A cloudless sky and the sun has just set.

Him: Now you have pointed it, yes, a cloudless sky and the sun setting. Thanks.

I wrote a Haiku on this:

My reason for going
Chuck Mangione played to death
Hill Where the Lord Hides

The following day, he told me this piece is SOLD to the highest bidder in Thailand!

Dan S. Siglos, Painter

Currently, my brother is creating a comic style painting of our family. We are enjoying this activity as he paints from the oldest to the youngest in a huge canvass and I create a blurb. The blurb stays between me and him. Or maybe I will share it later.

This is Dan S. Siglos self-portrait (not Picasso), stepping on a snake. The snake is the symbol of evil. My brother is fearless. The meaning behind this is “Fear No Evil.” I understand what he means knowing what he has gone through.

I shall update and post more of the comic painting next time.

List of Lies

One ear to another - Malta

Lies I’ve told my 4 year old recently

  • The mole men live in the subways.
  • The bird men live in the skies.
  • The monster doesn’t actually live under the bed (he’s hiding somewhere else nearby).
  • There are 71 flavors of snow, but only 63 flavors of water.
  • If you sing enough, you will never grow old.
  • Don’t worry, I lock up bad dreams in little cages.
  • Every good room has a ghost.
  • When we made you, we left part of ourselves behind so you would never be lonely.
  • Your shadow knows your secrets.
  • Books hide when they don’t want to be read.
  • Time moves faster when close your eyes.
  • You knew everything, but then you were born and forgot, and now you have to learn everything again.
  • Be nice to your brother, he will always be your best friend.
  • We’re not lost.
  • Moms and Dads never really get lost.
  • We know exactly where we’re going.

Memories found in my Facebook written by Kiki.

What lies have you told yourself lately?

As Painter Paints the Language of Sphere, Color, Line and Form

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To see what a painter paints, one has to look at the unexpected form that jumps out of the canvas and not to look into his mind. Art is not escape, but a way of finding order in chaos, a … Continue reading

What do you see? Spellbinding masterpiece door that led me to Caravaggio.

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A glimpse of blue sky, a wisp of clouds, birds, cathedral and concrete buildings is what I see in painting along the hallway wall of Malta’s airport.  Looking at the mural makes me want to run outside and feel that … Continue reading

Of Public Places and Spaces

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Public arts abound on alleyways and bus boards in Vancouver.  Local painters and writers creative works are shared for the public to enjoy. It astounds me how much imagination a person has from painting to writing. Putting them together create … Continue reading

How do we reconcile? We hope…

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“We hope that your faith inspires you to be just, loving, humble and merciful. We hope that your faith inspires you to encourage the church to be more just, more loving, more humble and more merciful.” “We hope you find … Continue reading

Painted Prayers

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The primary emphasis in this work is based on evolution distinctively a combination of three persons, one God: God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Spirit. He is drawn and inspired by The Trinity. The Prayer of St. Augustine … Continue reading

Respectful Woman – a Superhero

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  I suppose for a child, adult seems to be larger than life and that’s how my nephew, Carlos, drew his mom. Tall, colorful clothing with beautiful red smiling lips. As for the arms, I don’t know why they turned … Continue reading

Shipwreck from fantasy to reality

A blank piece of paper is transformative. Look at it and you can repurpose it by splashing colors of  broken lines to circles. White is an absence of color and black has too much pigmentation. There are only three basic colors: red, yellow and green. What do you see?

Basic Color by Siglos

At the Cenacle Convent

On a busy street of West 12th and Granville, I see cars with its tailpipe spewing exhaust gasses; he sees dragons breathing fire and brimstone. Is his mind broken? No. Or is my imagination eschewed? Yes.

Of Cars and Dragon by Siglos

Of Cars and Dragon

Lots of things are invisible, but we don’t know how many because we can’t see them. What we see are the good and the bad, the rich and the poor, the saint and sinners.  With him, he can only see the goodness of others as they march by.

The Apostles by Siglos

When the Saints go marching by

For other people, his life has turned up-side down. With that thought in mind, he literally took the word, reinvented the meaning of it, applied it to his last name and no matter how you read it up or down, it will always read SIGLOS.

Up/Down by Siglos

Which way is Up?

So, what is the purpose of life. There is no single purpose. We just have to keep repurposing our talent and be of service to all.

New Westminster City Page

Of Service to the Seniors

Prognosis: Bipolar

The many muses of Picasso and how long they were together.

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Picasso: The artist and his muses exhibit is in town at the Vancouver Art Gallery. It is a journey about his art, personal life, and overlapping affairs to remember with six different women that fueled his artistic abilities and made … Continue reading

Arts living in a frame

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Welcome. A roll of toilet paper and towel. A supply he received upon entering the frame. His arts live in a frame called “The Hole”. Three out of fifteen I managed to capture, between wiring. The exhibits are all inside … Continue reading

One Step Behind – This is my story

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How nice the view from up there must have been. It’s difficult to imagine when you’re always looking down. Don’t regret it when you finally see the upside of REALITY because there’s this crazy notion that regrets pile up to … Continue reading

The Untouchables

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In India, due to its caste system, there is a group of people called the “untouchables”. We are talking millions of them, not just a tiny group. These people received their ‘title’ by default, by birth. They are considered impure. … Continue reading

Self-Portrait: Mended

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  Self-Portrait, Mended by Eleanor Hannan This piece is based on drawings done the day after 7-hour surgery to remove skin cancer from my nose. I chose to have only local anesthetic so as to be awake during the surgery. … Continue reading

Mending Lives

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Stitching keeps broken parts together. A simple stitch can literally mend lives. All it takes is a sewing needle, thread, pair of hands and a heart determined to restore in order to stay connected. To prove the point, these are series … Continue reading

What Hit Me.

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Come to think of it, inspiration comes from learning as simple as ABCs to studying a complicated theorem of Isaac Newton. What hit me started with Apples. Apple inspired me to learn my ABCs. A is for apple. Then it … Continue reading

Roman Numeral XIII

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Tattooed on his left hip is roman numeral XIII. At age seventeen, he had this number permanently inked on his birthday suit. It is meaningful to him because it was at that age the bullying at school stopped. Growing up, … Continue reading

Psychologically speaking, age is a game.

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Ask kids how old they are and they will tell you the truth. They are honest about their age. Using their tiny fingers; they will show you the exact number. When kids learn philosophy, age is about “almost” three or … Continue reading

“When God Created Mothers”

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When the Good Lord was creating mothers, He was into His sixth day of “overtime” when the angel appeared and said. “You’re doing a lot of fiddling around on this one.” And God said, “Have you read the specs on … Continue reading

Do you understand? Do you see?

Red Kite RunnerA good book gives me something to ponder, something to learn, something to move my senses. Reading The Kite Runner just did that to me. To sum it up:

Thou shall not steal, thou shall not lie, thou shall not cheat.

“Now, no matter what the mullah teaches, there is only one sin, only one. And that is theft. Every other sin is a variation of theft. Do you understand that?” […]
“When you kill a man, you steal a life,” Baba said. “You steal his wife’s right to a husband, rob his children of a father. When you tell a lie, you steal someone’s right to the truth. When you cheat, you steal the right to fairness. Do you see?” […]
“There is no act more wretched than stealing, Amir,” Baba said. “A man who takes what’s not his to take, be it a life or a loaf of naan…I spit on such a man. And if I ever cross paths with him, God help him. Do you understand?” (3.29-34)
Credits:  Red Kite Runner ~ oil canvass by Allan Chow
The Kite Runner: Khaled Hosseini 

Is Today The Day We Die At Work?

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“How long, O Christ, shall we wait for thy law to be understood?” ~ W. Frank Hatheway, “The Cry of Labor” (1906) We all work for a living, we spend the majority of our life employed and we don’t know … Continue reading

Talking Sticks: There are no bad color, only bad color combination

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There are many shades of orange and different meanings. It all depends who is talking. These sticks talk about visual story of Metis in Canadian history. Notice that color orange is widely use in Metis art as well as crafts. “Elders remind … Continue reading

Everything is going to be alright

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alright

This public gesture coming from the heart of Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside (known as one of the poorest postal codes in Canada) celebrates optimism amidst the pervasive – and often exaggerated – negativity found within many of the messages we routinely encounter, offering hope for the future. (Martin Creed Work No. 851)

And my creed is “All shall be well” ~ Julian of Norwich

Experiment this and you will fall in love.

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Dr. Aron’s study is fascinating and she always wanted to try it. She did. The study: A heterosexual man and woman enter the lab through separate doors. They sit face to face and answer a series of increasingly personal questions. Then they … Continue reading

A Letter to Neil Gaiman

Dear Neil:

I hope you don’t mind me addressing you on a first name basis, Neil.

Your commencement speech to the  2013 School of Visual Arts graduation ceremony is entertaining with so much wisdom and advice not just on art but life in general. The graduates were laughing  so was I. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

You may call me, Perpetua.

There is part in the speech that I find fascinating, compelling and disturbing. Allow me to quote you:

“When things get tough, this is what you should do: Make good art. I’m serious. Husband runs off with a politician — make good art. Leg crushed and then eaten by a mutated boa constrictor — make good art. IRS on your trail — make good art. Cat exploded — make good art. Someone on the Internet thinks what you’re doing is stupid or evil or it’s all been done before — make good art. Probably things will work out somehow, eventually time will take the sting away, and that doesn’t even matter. Do what only you can do best: Make good art. Make it on the bad days, make it on the good days, too. “

 You may call me, Perpetua.

Before I continue, please pardon me for intruding. As an esteemed artist, I think highly of you.

You see, Neil, I am thinking of the cat that exploded. Translating that in my mind it goes: Dead Cat – make good art. Death – make good art, Anxiety Recording – make good art, Suicide – make good art.

I am in a very tough situation. There is a funeral going on in my brain. My nephew’s friend committed suicide. This bothers me. A lot. They grew up together, studied at the same school and graduated. My nephew just turned 25. She must be the same age. Young. Too young to die. This is so close to home.

What I want is to make good art out of the recording from her heartfelt experience of illness on anxiety. I tried writing it in a poetic way, but, I don’t have an ounce of artistic mind. The purpose is to use this as a tool to educate people.

This is the transcript of her recording five months ago.

On My Anxiety

I am cut to the core by a beast I can’t control. Not cut as in my wrists, as in my legs because, you know, that beautiful woman next to me in the Psych ward does it there.

The beautiful woman in the coffee shop a 5-minute walk away, which is 5 minutes too long  of a walk when you’re depressed, ornaments her arms, her legs with deep and close bloody gashes. Gashes that I want to bandage with love and heal, but “I have too many problems, I think, I don’t know how to help you.”

Nonetheless, I am cut.

Cut by the words of people who don’t understand what it is to live with a demon inside your mind, your chest, your shaking hands, and your body that is wretched and dried out from all your tears and is so nervous that you have to pray you are always near a bathroom because even your insides don’t work properly.

But, of course, you don’t really pray. Not by this point at least. By now you know if there was a God you would be better, that none of this would have ever happened.

If you don’t see the stigma against mental illness then you probably don’t have it or you’ve never used the internet or stepped outside.

You’ve never had to write a heartfelt resignation letter to end a job only to be eliminated from the workplace silently without any acknowledgment of your soul-bearing words.

None.

You’ve never had your own family tell you to suck it up or not dwell on things so much.

Do you think I WANT to FUCKING DWELL on the things I dwell on?!

Dwell on the fact that I would rather have suffocated myself to death than have attended my Grandma’s 75th birthday because there were gonna be too many people there.

Dwell on the fact that I’ve had to stop seeing all my friend because I’m so anxious.

Dwell on the fact that I can’t see my in-laws without feeling nauseated by my anxiety.

I cannot SUCK IT UP!

Not just that, I can’t do anything except unexpectedly write poetry at 3 am and this has only happened  through a careful balance of Lithium, Clonazepam, Abilify, Olanzapine, and Zopiclone.

If those sound scary it’s  because they are.

It’s scary to have your brain need to be invaded. To experience the world drugged. To experience the world drugged and still want to throw up at the thought of having to attend a social function.

Andrew Solomon writes on depression and says: “If you said to me, you have to have acute anxiety for the next month; I would rather slit my wrist than go through with it.”

If you’re looking for a way out there may not be one.

Suicide is so seductive. I almost gave up. Almost walked through that exit.

But I’m still here.

Here because of support. Here because of that place. Because of the psych ward that they only seem to ever let you know about when you’re at the point of actually killing yourself.

The ward is full of some of the nicest people you could ever meet but they’ve been so hurt by the world they can no longer function.

We are there because we feel too much. Hurt too much. We are sponges for negativity, depression, anxiety, schizophrenia, and more.

It’s taking drugs, love, support, and money to recreate myself.

To pull myself away from that place where your sob to your husband, plead with him to let you die because your anxiety is so bad, so bad you can’t take a breath without feeling the tight know of pain in your chest, the French brain in your stomach, the shaking of your insides, the hot tears streaming down your face.

Not everyone pulls away from that. Some of us are gone forever.

Unfortunately, Neil, she did not make it.

With my nephew’s farewell note to her, I played with it to read like poetry.

Like a quake in an ocean
A Tsunami of emotion
Waves upon waves of memories
Come flooding back.

I had a feeling that last conversation
and parting hug would be a while until the next.
I never imagined it would be our last
of this life until ‘The Next’.

Well my Friend, rest peacefully.
We can catch up once we meet.

How can I make good art on this? Can this be written in a poetic form? Or should I just leave it as is? What do you think? At any rate, your comments would be much appreciated.

With warm regards and respectfully yours, Perpetua.

Worth Repeating

Photo of a painting from Fragrant Wood

Photo of a painting from Fragrant Wood

A disciple confessed his bad habit of repeating gossip.
Said the Master wickedly, “Repeating it wouldn’t be so bad if you did not improve on it.”
~ Anthony de Mello, SJ

MORSEL:
To attain Knowledge, add things every day.
To attain Wisdom,remove things every day.
~ Lao Tzu

Special Needs

special needs (3)
We all have needs and children require more needs than adults.  Children are all special.

Looking at this photo not knowing who drew it, I would say it’s very well done, much better drawn in comparison to me. Having very little creative brain, I can learn from the artist, drawn by a  child, a special need child I heard. Who would know?

As far I am concern, this is a child with special talent.  Definitely a child’s drawing with special needs; education.

After Labour Day is first day back to school, unfortunately it’s not going to happen due to ongoing dispute between BCTF and government. I can only hope that the children will receive all the need they can while school is out of session.

Awareness: The Power of Art on Media

When it comes to promoting Dialogue, I keep my eyes on art and media.

Working previously in an advertising agency, it opened my vista to the wonderful world of communication with very few words using art. Words for me can get in the way. I choose my words.  The softer the word the better. Simple words preferably. It’s interesting to learn new words every. I subscribe to a word a day and learn new vocabulary. But for what purpose?  The word is only useful for me if it’s life-giving and to bring awareness.

Shhhh....

Shhhh….

Shhh…. look, just look and listen to what I am showing you. What thoughts and emotion are starting to form in you?

Hear No Evil

Hear No Evil

Can you hear? Can you hear your own thoughts? Your own prejudice?

Speak No Evil

Speak No Evil

When you speak, what language do you use? What I mean by language is not the word. It’s more than words. Do you say the truth, do speak love, do you resonate kindness?

See No Evil

See No Evil

Do you see what I mean? It starts with yourself, family, friends and to the outside world. If you keeps your eyes wide shut, what is the point of having a vision?

The Whole Picture

The Whole Picture

It happened, still happening. Not just at school, not just in Canada, it`s everywhere, it starts in you.  This is not to scare you. This is to learn from the power of media.

City of Vancouver Public Art

City of Vancouver Public Art

I am happy and I always will be.

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   Totem Pole Mother is the Beaver because she is hardworking, looking after the children, cooking, cleaning and everything else. Little sister is the loon because she goes up to her room and reads all by herself. Sometimes she goes … Continue reading

Globally speaking

VSB Student Artwork

VSB Student Artwork

I am

I’m but a human,
a leaf, a bee, a fish,
a ripple in the surface of still waters,
I’m mainly water,
crushed by risk acceptance,
new science of fakes,
deciding that life’s unique beings,
are just percentiles…
the political – scientist can do without,
leaves, bees, fish,
Me and You alike,
Globally speaking!

Poetic thought by George-B

And I would like to add that deep inside of us, we have a heart and the colour of our blood is the same.

I stumbled on this poem due to a slip of a finger using iPad at Sound Cloud by George-B.  George has a wide selections of classical music that I go to his site to listen while I do housekeeping or while I write. Thank you George for allowing me to share your poetic thought.

Clinging to relics

Relics are mementos. It could be a piece of rock or objects of personal nature that was left behind. There are plenty of these souvenirs at work.

relics brick

A brick from the demolished old building and replaced with a more elegant structure.

relics brick1

A century old brick used on roads.

What I enjoyed looking at is the old school chair and a rock because they are a work of art.  These are relics converted to art.

The artist stands beside these artifacts and I work with her.

Transparency

elephant

“We had better share our bewilderments. By hiding them from each other we should not hide them from ourselves.”
― C.S. Lewis,

Artist Pascal Chesneau won the David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation 2014 Wildlife Artist of the Year award for his stunning Transparence Elephant sculpture.

Three ways I interpret this art work:

  • An elephant in the room
  • The vanishing animal
  • Endangered species

It’s no big surprise that he won the award not just his artistic ability and it’s an excellent conversational piece with so many meanings.

What does this mean to you?
What emotions arises from you?
What are you hiding?

Update: National Geographic News June 16, 2014 ~ Elephant Satao: Monumental Lost

Sticking Together

monkeys (1)Sometimes, we need a hug.

“For me, personally, it’s not about creating something that looks like a photograph, which is often a moment in time, rather, I want to create work that connects with people and provokes an emotion whilst also being pleasing to look at.”

“I was struck by the closeness of these Barbary macaques to each other and spent a long time watching this couple, pondering the relationships they have and how similar they can be to our own. I want people who view the work to reflect back upon themselves and remember a time when they had the same intimacy and closeness with someone, be it a parent and child, siblings or partners. For me, it’s especially about that intimacy between two individuals where no one and nothing else exists in that moment. The softness of fur embodies the tenderness between them but also protection from the jagged rocks and the outside world. I want to show how feelings for someone special can often help see us through difficult times.”

Artist Colin Prestage created this incredibly tender portrait of two monkeys hugging in a piece called Sticking Together.

Understanding the Work of Art

artist5

“Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up.”  ― Pablo Picasso

An artist brought the Social Studies curriculum to life by reading a variety of legends and showed her own collection of Aboriginal masks to the Grade 4/5 students. She modelled building the mask using poster board,  paper mâché, glue, rice paper and paint to decorate the mask.

As the students learn the Aboriginal culture and create their own Aboriginal masks, they make the subject come alive through their own creativity. The project also helps stimulate an interest in other cultures that enriches the students. Art projects give students the opportunity to embrace self-discovery and to make meaning from the world around them.

Good Morning, Sunshine

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Aboriginal Paper Mache

Cree Proverb

Realize that we as human beings have been put on this earth for only a short time and that we must use this time to gain wisdom, knowledge, respect and the understanding for all human beings since we are all relatives.

“ka-kí-kiskéyihtétan óma, namoya kinwés maka aciyowés pohko óma óta ka-hayayak wasétam askihk, ékwa ka-kakwéy miskétan kiskéyihtamowin, iyinísiwin, kistéyitowin, mina nánisitotatowin kakiya ayisiniwak, ékosi óma kakiya ka-wahkotowak.”

Class of 4/5 at Bayview Elementary School.  The students are learning about First Nation culture.  This project helps stimulate the children’s interest in other culture by integrating Social Studies, Language and Arts.

This one of many masks that are on display at the lobby of the Education Centre.

The letters in a school

letter better

For the month of April, some of the letters in the bulletin boards are about whales, bears and dragonflies.  These animals stand for respect, cooperation, kindness and courage.  The students wrote what they think regarding the nature of things.

What the children wrote is based on the circle of coexistence and cooperation of nature. It is a partnership of students, teachers, staff, elders and families in the community.  As a community, they can learn what these animals can teach them in life.

letter circle

Letters are not enough, the children worked with their hands by creating papier-mâché which is more fun than writing, in my opinion.

“Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn.” ― Benjamin Franklin

Hearing the voice of the one you love

Mary Magdalene Da-Vinci

“Woman, why are you weeping?”

Mary Magdalene heard someone talking to her as she stood weeping outside the tomb of Jesus.  She did not recognize the person at all.  She thought he was a gardener.

Then Jesus said to her, “Mary”.

When Mary Magdalene heard Jesus called her name, this is the time that she recognized him.

“Do not hold on to me, because I have not yet ascended to the Father.”

Mary Magdalene is the first person that saw and spoke to Jesus since he died.

This is the reason I chose Mary Magdalene as my gravatar. I am hoping that one day I will hear Him call my name and hoping you will hear Him call your name as well.

Wishing you all a Blessed Easter.

Remember to remember

Henry Miller 1946

Henry Miller 1946

I want to remember as much as possible
the events of my life be it pleasant or
unpleasant as long as I can.  There are
times that I want to remember less.

Someone told me instead of remembering,
remember to forget. And I ponder about this
and what came to mind, sooner or latter
a time will come, it will happen without even
having to remember.

Image of Henry Miller from Flavor Wire

Three friends

The area that I work is an artsy place from paintings, photography and sculptures.  One particular artwork is very interesting and is in full display at a street corner.  Surprisingly enough, the sculpture has maintained its integrity.  It’s about the love for three different animals: a horse, a monkey and a dog.

These are the friends of Emily Carr and she loved her animals.

Friends of Emily Carr

Friends of Emily Carr

“I sat self-contained with dogs, monkey and work; writing into the long dark evenings after painting and loving everything terrifically. In later years my work had some praise and some successes but the outstanding event to me was the doing which I am still at. Don’t pickle me away as done.”

Priceless Treasures

Look into my eyes.  You are falling deeply in love with me.  Look into my eyes.
valentine lookI am perfect to fall in love with.  We are meant for each other, forever!  You are mine!  You cannot resist me for you are just totally in love with my soft fuzzy adorable body.  Feel me, touch me and love me.  You will do as I say.
valentine kyle

The Grade 1 and 2 students at VSB made their own “Splat” with black paint and chalk pastels.  Using toothpicks they gently dragged the wet paint away from Splat’s body to create his fuzzy fur.  Heart shaped doilies were added for a finish touch with “artist’s” name written on it.

With lots and lots of love and fur balls, Happy Valentines, Love from a colony of  Splats.
valentine Gr 1 and 2Working for the school board, the children are the treasure in my line of work.  One cannot help but fall in love with them especially when they come to show and tell what they learnt at school to our offices.  They are priceless.

My dear Lucy

No one is too old for Fairy Tales

Once upon a time, my dream house will have a library.  The library will be filled with wall to wall and top to bottom room full of books that I collected over the years.  And then I discovered the joy of going to the library.  I ended giving away most of my books to goodwill and kept the children’s books.

I never outgrew The Little Prince, All things bright and beautiful, I like you because and The man who planted trees. These books have taught me more than any self-help books that I’ve read.  Besides, I love the pictures.  It is true that pictures say a thousand words and I can create a different story just by looking at them.

Image source: Jemima’s Journal

Draw yourself

Being Friday and end of January 2014,  draw yourself a happy face.

z kostasHe never received formal art training. A mix of luck, ignorance, curiosity and delusions of adequacy somehow allowed him to start earning a living by drawing pictures before he even reached twenty, and thus abandoning a promising career as a cook for a lovely Mexican joint. – See more at: About Kosta

Sketch by: Kosta Kiriakakis

The Joy of Children’s Performance

Play as you read along: https://3psbyseeker.files.wordpress.com/2013/12/saint-lucia-in-sweden.mp3

Last week of school, the children came to the Board for show and tell.  They show us, tell us, and perform for us what they learnt at school.  We all look forward to this special event.  Working at the head office, we hardly get a chance to see the students.  Instead they come to us.

They came to post on the bulletin board their art work of Hanukkah Fingers

They decorated the Christmas tree with plenty of angels and sang Christmas songs in French.  These students study in a French Immersion Program in one of the Vancouver public schools.

Lord Byng String Orchestra

Lord Byng has a group of students that plays string instrument.  They, too, came to perform for us. The Lord Byng String Orchestra is going to perform at Lincoln Center in the spring.  Last year, they had the great distinction of being invited to an exclusive festival for American School Orchestras in Atlanta, Georgia.  They wowed judges at the festival and received a standing ovation.  They took second place.  It is likely that they did not win first place as the award probably needed to go to an American school since it was an American competition.  Also, as they wear concert black and not school uniforms they were actually docked points from their performance, another reason for not making first place.  (All American groups wear school uniforms).

One song that I love the most is Santa Lucia that a group of elementary students with angelic voices sang for us in earlier years. I beg the Maestro for a repeat performance and did not stop begging until he oblige.  It was a heavenly sweet delightful song.

The song you just listened to titled “Santa Lucia in Sweden” came from YouTube.

It will be quiet for the next two weeks on the school level while the children are on winter break to celebrate their life in their own traditional ways.

Song behind the Gravatar

MARY MAGDALENE
 
Mary Magdalene
 
I don’t know how to love him.
What to do, how to move him.
I’ve been changed, yes really changed.
In these past few days, when I’ve seen myself,
I seem like someone else. 
I don’t know how to take this.
I don’t see why he moves me.
He’s a man. He’s just a man.
And I’ve had so many men before,
In very many ways,
He’s just one more. 
Should I bring him down?
Should I scream and shout?
Should I speak of love,
Let my feelings out?
I never thought I’d come to this.
What’s it all about? 
Don’t you think it’s rather funny,
I should be in this position.
I’m the one who’s always been
So calm, so cool, no lover’s fool,
Running every show.
He scares me so. 
I never thought I’d come to this.
What’s it all about? 
Yet, if he said he loved me,
I’d be lost. I’d be frightened.
I couldn’t cope, just couldn’t cope.
I’d turn my head. I’d back away.
I wouldn’t want to know. 
He scares me so.
I want him so.
I love him so.
 
 
Related link:  Jesus Christ,  Superstar

October Peace Challenge: The Key of Peace – A Celebration

Everyday is thanksgiving day.
Happy Thanksgiving Day Everyone.
Put all your fingers, hand, body, mind and soul together.
Enjoy every moment as it comes, play and dance to the melody of life
This is my vision of peace where one plays together even if you are off key. 
 
Thank you, Paulette.
Pax Tecum.  Seeker.
 
Related links: