“This series of watercolors is inspired by the Oneness of “As Above So Below”. Trees, Duality Trees, Inverted Trees reflections, dreamscapes, paths, in search of their fulfillment.” Marina Kanavaki
Marina Kanavaki – As Above, So Below
I am delighted to welcome the Year 2020 with Marina Kanavaki, a dear blogger friend. Over the years, Marina has inspired me to view art and creative endeavour via the lens of her mantra, “Art Toward a Happy Day.”
Marina showcased her watercolour paintings “As Above So Below” at the Art Estate Gallery March – April 2019 to great reviews. When I heard that her 2020 Calendar reflected this amazing exhibition, I contacted Marina directly so that I would receive my As Above So Belowcalendar as a celebration of entering a fresh new year of exciting possibilities and opportunities.
Thank you, Marina, for your remarkable dedication to art, music, and building a vibrant community.
When you meet Marina, you will see for yourself that her artistic expression is “Art Toward a Happy Day.”
“I think that one’s art is a growth inside one. I do not think one can explain growth. It is silent and subtle. One does not keep digging up a plant to see how it grows.” Emily Carr
Welcome to Sunday Evening Reflection. I invite you to join me in a walk through Emily Carr’s garden, Victoria, British Columbia. It is a September day, the gentle warmth of the sun nourishes the vibrant colours of late summer. In the air, winter is stirring, readying for the days of rest that prepare the earth for the coming of spring.
“It is hard to remember just when you first became aware of being alive. It is like looking through rain onto a bald, new lawn; as you watch, the brown is all pricked with pale green. You did not see the points pierce, did not hear the stab – there they are!”Emily Carr
Tonight, as the twilight closes in on November 11th, Remembrance Day, I think of my Father who was one who came back from WWII. The day he left home for the first time, in a soldier’s uniform at 18 years of age, he remembered hearing his mother playing a hymn on the piano as he walked down the road. There was no certainty, only a knowledge that life was precious.
Earlier this year, I traveled to St. John’s Newfoundland. It was a place that has always been on my “to visit” list ever since I studied the map of Canada in my early grades. Bannerman Park in St. John’s holds a poignant reminder of the sacrifices made by those of the Royal Newfoundland Regiment soldiers and their families.
“The Homecoming” brings to mind both joy and sorrow, and the need to come together as a community.
“It’s passing on the torch to the next generation.” Sculptor Morgan MacDonald
I am celebrating International Dog Day by going back to my first visit to the National Galleries Scotland, located in the heart of a vibrant Edinburgh. It was during the height of the Fringe Festival and the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo, when the Royal Mile is filled with festivities, laughter, and excited tourists (I include me in that description). Inside the Gallery, there was a tranquility marked by an occasional hushed comment.
I happened to look up as I passed through an archway. That was the moment when I saw the painting of Callum by John Emms, 1895. What I had stumbled upon by “looking up” was a profound connection between a man and his dog.
Callum, John Emms (1843 – 1912)
Callum, was a Dandie Dinmont terrier owned by Mr. James Cowan Smith. The painting was a bequest of James Cowan Smith in 1919. According to the Gallery notation:
“Mr James Cowan Smith bequeathed £55,000 to the National Gallery of Scotland in 1919. This enormous amount formed an important trust fund for acquisitions. His bequest had two conditions: the first that the Gallery provided for his dog Fury, who survived him; the second that Emms’ picture of his previous dog Callum should always be hung in the Gallery. Both conditions were fulfilled, and although Fury is long since dead, Callum still hangs in the Gallery in memory of his owner.”
The legacy of £55,000 provided funds to purchase invaluable art work, including Constable’s Dedham Vale, and Sargent’s Lady Agnew and Goya’s El Medico.
I wonder if there is a painting of Fury. Always a mystery to solve…
A long-time friend once said to me, “We have a friendship, with commas.”
“What does that mean?” I asked.
“It means that, no matter how much time has passed, we pick up our conversation where we left off. There are no “periods” in our friendship timeline.”
This memory floated into my thoughts as I was reaching high above my head to capture a photo of a flowers.
What I love most about flowers is their willingness to bloom, without receiving anything in return. There is no quid pro quo. They bloom because that is what they were meant to do. They arrive in season, without commas, welcoming us to enjoy their moment in the sun.
Georgia O’Keeffe wrote: “Nobody sees a flower – really – it is so small it takes time – we haven’t time – and to see takes time, like to have a friend takes time.”
May our time be fill with many commas.
Join me in walking in the St. Albert’s Botanical Garden. You need to take a rain hat, because it is raining!
Vancouver winters and early springs bring an abundance of rain, with heavy clouds surrounding our mountains. The wind is brisk, but not cold, and there is an invigorating moisture in the air. When I leave home, I contemplate whether I should take an umbrella or not. The day that I first discovered what I now call, The Art Road along the Vancouver Seawall, I chose my camera over umbrella.
It was a good decision…
The Vancouver Seawall from Cambie Bridge to Olympic Village had been turned into a mural extravaganza, seemingly overnight. The City of Vancouver and BC Housing created an innovative way to use art to conceal construction work. Even more exciting, they featured artwork by grade 6 and 7 students from the False Creek Elementary School.
Look closely at the artwork embedded with stories and symbolism.
An inukshuk, a landmark built for use by the Inuit, recognizing the diversity of cultural heritages.
A salmon in flight, signifying our responsibility to the environment.
Our water taxi, Aquabus, with mountains and the Burrard bridge in the background, representing the roads and waterways that connect our communities.
The Vancouver Skyline, a reminder that our city is growing and evolving.
The Canadian Flag, celebrating our great nation.
The Peace Symbol, accepting our responsibility to our global community.
Children have the power to transform our world, even at a young age. May we celebrate their work and validate their creative spirit. Remember Pablo Picasso’s mother:
“When I was a child my mother said to me, ‘If you become a soldier, you’ll be a general. If you become a monk, you’ll be the pope.’ Instead I became a painter and wound up as Picasso.”