Tuesday, December 31, 2013
Petroglyphs at Taliesin West.
I was taken on a guided tour of Taliesin West, the winter home of Frank Lloyd Wright and his architecture school, which he started building in 1937 and where he lived (for the winter) till his death. The organic architecture is unassuming and brilliant, using local materials and the interior spaces were genius! I thought the whole thing was fantastic. While Frank and his students were digging up the path for the driveway in Taliesin West, they unearthed beautiful rocks with petroglyphs from the Hohokam tribe. It is one of these symbols on the rocks that inspired Frank Lloyd Wright's logo for Taliesin West.
The family friend who invited me for this tour, then took me for a drink and snack at the Arizona Biltmore, where Frank was the design/architect consultant with Albert Chase McArthur who built it in 1929. It's a stunning building where I got to sample some local ales!
Saturday, December 21, 2013
Thursday, December 19, 2013
I have come here to reflect for a bit on the next phase of my life. I began my life as an artist in 2004 - I mean painting for a living. It's 10 years now, or getting there and it has been a great journey. No one said it would be easy, but I have managed to live my life doing things that I love to do and trying to earn an honest living through my paintings.
The last 10 years have given me an opportunity to get involved in issues that are meaningful to me. I got involved with World Literacy of Canada which took me to Varanasi to work with the women and children there. I have been involved in Liza's school in Goa for over 20 years. I got to volunteer with the Homeless Shelter, downtown Toronto for about 3 years and have recently been introduced to Tribal communities in central India. This has all happened in varying degrees through my art.
So now I'm ready to focus my energies with renewed verve and involve myself further in issues and causes that are meaningful to me.
Thursday, December 12, 2013
Tuesday, December 10, 2013
Agra. The Taj. 1874
The red and yellow Macaw (study)
I find the work of Edward Lear really inspiring. At the age of 16 he was earning a living by drawing birds, and then subsequently went on to be a landscape painter and travelled around the world. I have recently come across some of his watercolours that he did while travelling around India in 1873-74, and they are stunning! I will be heading back to India next month for my winter, landing in Delhi first on Jan 7th, then Benares on the 15th, Goa on the 29th and Bangalore on the 5th of February to finish my next children's book, and these watercolours have whet my appetite to paint more on my travels.
I love this quote of his, that is applicable to a lot of us artists who earn our living through our paintings, even in this day and age. He says ' ....tho' I have 400₤ of commissions, yet people don't pay their money till the pictures are done usually - not always then. So I have been obliged to write for an advance on two paintings./ I much wish I could get so far beforehand as to be out of that constant worry of "daily bread" wh. is a bore- but there is no remedy:- & one ought to think how many unknown artists have no bread at all.'
He is also known for his Nonsense verse, and his Book of Nonsense, where he bridges children's literature and humor. One of my favourite poems of his is "The Owl and the Pussycat".