Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Thanksgiving week

Ten family members plus 8 friends from Shreveport, Bay City and Charleston, W. Va. celebrated Thanksgiving on the new Carnival Magic, Unfortunately, Carnival's only nod to the holiday was to serve a turkey dinner that evening...for a line that boasts "fun fun fun", a poor performance. Warning...their kitchen has a long, long way to go to be considered good; another disappointment. We loved the comedy routines of the Spotlight Lounge, but were much less enthusiastic for the less than creative super shows in the huge theater tho' lots of technical expertise was utilized.
We all enjoyed the ports of Key West, Freeport and Nassau in the Bahamas. Our family explored the Old Town and Harborside area in Key West, had a wonderful day at the Junkanoo Club in Freeport and the Atlantis aquarium in Nassau. Look at my web album please for more photos.
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Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Wonderful week

Please look at "Shreveport Common, Part 1" on my YouTube site: artsMaven75. The short video ( I was so engrossed in creating my 3 projects that I didn't shoot nearly enough video)shows some of the artists involved while creating the Common preview for this Saturday's public viewing and input. During this past week, I created "target" hydrants for the proposed dog park, seed packets for the Mercy Center's proposed produce gardens, and columns to suggest a bandstand in the green area. It was great to be able to work, amidst other artists in Coolspace, though there wasn't enough time for collaboration, there was opportunity for camaraderie.

And then news from grandson, Wyn, that this coming week, he'll be in the Masterworks(?) Chorus, singing in the Frank Gehry designed Walt Disney Center. Wish I could be in the audience to experience this widely acclaimed space for music, and Wyn's beautiful baritone. Wyn will be attending TCU this Fall...and Ft. Worth is a lot closer than L.A..

Friday, May 6, 2011

Jazz at the Barnwell: Twotones

Last pm marked the first of the jazz series at the Barnwell, sponsored by Eldorado.

Though there was little media pre-coverage, there was a large audience. From 6 to 8 pm, AJ and the Twotones entertained us with foot tapping, hand clapping blues and jazz, from Muddy Waters to Eric Clapton and so much more. There were couples dancing, lots of food and beverages on tables being consumed, visiting with friends and family; everyone enjoying the music and the riverviews, visiting with friends and family. Hope to see you there next Thursday evening.

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Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Revisiting Bilberry Park Installation

Fifteen years after the creation by children of the Queensborough area, of this mural and the Pyramid Group's 7 sculpture installation, I returned to Bilberry Park to see what had become of these public art ventures in which I'd taken part. So many wonderful memories flooded my thoughts as I passed Job Corps where we'd built the sculptures, and then I entered the park. There's good looking play equipment now instead of the rusty stuff of 1995-6, a covered games area, and a new rec building. And the mural, in amazingly good condition, happily was placed on the new hut in the same location it had on the old one, and is the entry to the park with the installation area directly ahead.
The very low enclosing concrete walls have been well painted with bright colors and look good. I do wish SPAR would plant perennials into those enclosed spaces rather than leaving them to the weeds and litter. Four of the original sculptures celebrating the lives of Doug Williams, Johnny Bilberry, area artists and Afro-Americans, are still in place. Actually pieces of these 4: the upper parts are gone, the paint is worn off, faded, but some panels especially the dedication panels, black and white decorative ones are in good condition. but the remnants of these once large, proud, brilliantly colored creative pieces now are on their last legs.
I wish those pieces still in good shape could be salvaged and placed, like the mural, on the hut walls or elsewhere, and that there'd be a new call to artists for this area. Lucille Reed, Nevelyn Brown and I enjoyed and thrived amidst the Queensborough neighbors and I would hope another artist, artists, would/could continue to be present there.
I did shoot a less than satisfactory video of the installation: its on YouTube...type Artsmaven75 in the search box and then click Bilberry.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Libya:2003; my story

On April 8, 2003, during the first days of the war in Iraq, Ira and I, as passengers on Swan Hellenic's Minerva2, visited Tripoli, Libya. We had enjoyed our previous day's visit to Benghazi and the amazing site of Cyrene. Our Tripoli based tours included touring Sabratha, the Spanish Fort (see bottom photo) and a marvelous museum that had the most wonderful, intricate mosaic floors from various antiquities sites. We didn't go to the huge site of Leptis Magna due to lack of time, but hoped to return on another voyage for that great experience. As we rode through the city, we noted that we saw no women on the streets, in the shops; in fact, we saw few people and unlike other places we visited, those few neither looked up as we passed, nor waved. There were huge and varied pictures of Khadaffi everywhere. There was only one taciturn vendor at the beautiful, huge Sabratha site. I haven't heard anything from the media re the many sites of antiquity; whether they're being protected, etc...The ones near Tripoli were distant from the city, but from Sabratha, near Benghazi, we could see the sea...I hope Cyrene survives this civil war intact; that its not in the path of any fighting.
When our ship came into Libyan waters, all bars on board were required to be shuttered though wine was available in the dining room. As we were ready to depart from Tripoli, our 2nd Libyan port, there was a very long delay. When the ship finally left, our captain announced that the ship's stated port taxes had been tripled by the harbormaster; that if the exorbitant amt. wasn't paid, his passport would be taken, the ship searched and if any alcohol was found on board, the ship would be impounded. Of course it was paid, albeit under protest. This British ship was scheduled to make several visits to Libya, and I thought that those ports would in the future be bypassed, but various maneuvers behind the scenes satisfied the shipping company and Libyan officials, and no changes occurred. The next year however, the US and Libya were at odds and US passports were no longer acceptable at Libyan ports. I still hope to visit Leptis Magna.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Meltdown: Cause for concern

According to Bill Nye, speaking on CNN last pm, the cesium released in that nuclear reactor explosion, indicates a meltdown. The Japanese authorities claim it to be a 'Partial meltdown" that like being a little bit pregnant? Mr. Nye, a reliable, credible old timer in dealing with scientific perspectives on the media, noted that the Japanese have a historical SOP of underplaying critical events so as not to be blamed, not to bring on panic in their heavily populated island nation. The MD, interviewed later on CNN said that the iodine pills being distributed will not ward off anything but thyroid cancer.
I haven't heard a single media weather person comment re which way the winds over this cesium laden area re blowing...if towards the US, should we all be wearing radiation badges, staying indoors during a certain time period? if toward the Asian mainland, shouldn't they be taking precautions for their populace?

Saturday, March 5, 2011


Though this piece had first been displayed at ARTSPACE for the SIX exhibit, I decided to show it again for the IMPROMPTU show. Like the other 80+ exhibiting artists, I found it difficult to select just one work. This piece however echoes many of the recurring themes in many of my other works, felt crisp and fresh when I removed it from storage, and for me, provokes an interesting conversation for any viewer. I think you'll enjoy it.