Adventures in Ecuador, 2016Read More
Wandering around New York on a misty evening . . . a chance encounter with a security guard by the Oculus at the World Trade Centre left me with a gentle heart and eyes open. He lost friends when the towers came down, as did many. He was to be working there that day, and arrived on the scene to see the first tower fall. He told me that when he spoke to strangers at the time — the second tower's gonna come down too, best get as far away as possible — he was amazed that they looked at him and instead of taking his advice, asked — who are you to say? — He told me that since that day he has learned to be kinder to people. We are more than we may seem. Much much more.
The Cloisters Museum is well worth a visit. One walks from the subway (86th Street) in northern Manhattan along a winding path bordered by trees and rocks with a panoramic view of the river. It's a refreshing and rejuvenating experience after the busy streets of New York. The Cloisters' collection comprises approximately two thousand works of art.
The museum reminded me of the Alhambra in Spain. Chatting with the attendant when I returned to the coat check, I was delighted to hear him say:
"I love it here. I am from Spain, it feels like home."
Sophie Calle - is another intriguing artist born in France, 1953. Much of her work is photography based and generally tells a story. The stories may be autobiographical, derive from tales of others' experiences, or be entirely fiction. Questioning the line between fiction and reality is fundamental to her work.
In her work Autobiographies (The Tie) she accompanies an image of a tie with an amusing anecdote which would be fun, if true — in which she claims to have seen a man who was badly dressed, so she sent him a silk tie. Each year, she said, she sent him a new article of clothing. One day, she wrote, she hoped to meet him clothed entirely as she had dressed him.
I love this concept. I couldn't find an image of the exact work but here's a link to a website which seems to represent her work.
I was charmed by an enchanting work by Teun Hocks.
Born 1947, Leiden, The Netherlands, Teun Hocks seems an intriguing artist with a great sense of humour.
Hocks creates "large scale hand painted photographs", featuring himself in the works.
He first creates a background with paint and props; he then positions himself within the created environment and captures the scene in a black and white photograph. This photograph is then blown up and sepia toned. He then paints a transparent layer of oil paint, colouring everything but allowing the original photo to come thought the paint.
A fascinating process — drawing, performing, photographing and painting.
His works include images of himself but are not self-portraits. He creates a kind of 'every man' situated in a puzzling, thought-provoking environment.
I'd like to meet him someday! I think we have a lot in common.
Check out his website too. Great fun.