Archive for February, 2008

Down under

dscf2314sq.jpgAs evidenced in this picture, you can all see me enjoying the view and the sun in Sydney Harbour. I took this picture (with the self-timer) at Macquarie Point. Macquarie was apparently the governor who turned New South Wales from a penal colony to a free settlement. His wife liked to sit on a chair at the end of the headland there and look at the view – hence the name. Currently in Canberra. We have the Australian National Gallery on the agenda for tomorrow.

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Going down under

I’m on my way this evening to Australia to visit my brother there, so my next post will from down under.

When I get back I have got loads of work to do getting ready for the show in early summer. More on this later.

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I just realized that I never posted the finished Jerusalem-at-night picture on the blog. Anyway, here it is. You can see the “full-sized” version here

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I saw this cool idea on Guy Kawasaki’s blog. Getting clean water is a big problem in developing countries. Streams are not always clean, carrying the water is hard and the villagers don’t have the resources to run a pump to get at the ground water. PlayPumps is a simple idea of connecting a children’s carousel to a water pump and providing water for a whole village as the children play.

I recently saw an article on a device to create electricty as you walk. My first thought was how daft this contracption would look strapped to my leg. I think that pumping water as you play is definitely cooler. It has me thinking… could we power our neighbourhood from the swingset in the local park?

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Yoyo blogged about “Running the Numbers An American Self-Portrait” photos of American consumerism by Chris Jordan. It is quite mind boggling to consider that  2,000,000 plastic beverage bottles are used in the US every five minutes or that 426,000 cell phones are retired in the US every day.

After viewing a few of the images, it does get a bit laborious (my son said “he must be one bored person”), but they do bring home the message. They also remind me a bit of the Paper Clips Project in which kids in a school in Tenessee collectected paper clips to represent the number of people killed in the Holocaust.

Chris writes in his artist’s statement that consumerism is a “seductive kind of mob mentality” to take and consume and keep up. He posits that “in this process we are doing irreparable harm to our planet and to our individual spirits”. This is what I was saying in my “Consuming Culture” post as well.

To go off on a Jewish tangent – this is part of what being an Ivri (Hebrew, but also meaning “one who stands on the other side”) should be about today.

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Last week was an amazing week for my painting with two pictures sold and an unprecedented output of three (almost four) pictures! This was a direct by-product of the weather that prevented me (or at least gave me a perfect justification) from going to work. This gave me loads of time for painting.

So what did we have? Last weekend I painted the clouds picture. Then on Monday Hayim sold two of my paintings. Tuesday night the snow started and so on Wednesday I started the painting of Migdal David under snow (see above) which I finished on Thursday. On Thursday I picked up an old canvas that I started almost exactly a year ago, but never finished and produced the picture you see here.

It is a small canvas (20×30 cm) but Hayim has a customer looking for that size. In all the picture came out rather well. It is a view looking from the old city towards Har HaZeitim (Mt of Olives). The tower on the top is the Augusta Victoria Hospital.

Then as if that wasn’t enough, I started on a new canvas. It is another 20×30 of a Jerusalem walls by night. I started it last night and I will finish it during the week. You can see below how it stands right now.

So how are we going by the goals I set a month back?

  1. Four pictures is a quarter of 16, so it looks well for meeting my production target.
  2. I have enjoyed all the paintings I have done so far despite the accelerated production rate, so I’m OK on that front as well.
  3. Selling two pictures is most of the way to selling three – so that makes us well on target. I might revise this target.
  4. I am also making progress on the exhibition front. I have an offer (more later) although we haven’t closed anything yet. Also if I can produce this rate of work, then that removes one of my worries of getting involved in doing an exhibition and gthen having to create a certain amount of work for it. I now just need to set a date and agree the terms.
  5. As I said in a previous post, the clouds were almost abstract and they give me a direction to pursue the abstraction idea.

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