Monday, September 28, 2015

"It's 'haha' not 'ha_ha'..."...P.S. Melbourne still hates me

I feel like I could be sitting here, somehow up so early that I am waiting for the sun to rise, but I am actually behind on my morning, and technically the sun has been up for hours.  It's just so obscured by a cold, cloud cover that I find knowing that it's there there isn't enough to make me believe.

So! Arrived back to Australia ten days ago.
I have already been to Melbourne and back (again) to see the first Australian show for Z's band. The show was more crowded then any of us guessed, and with an enthusiastic audience that were singing along.
So, far all the shows have gone this way.  Of course, here on the small island with it's cloud of "such a small population, -what can you expect?" pessimism - the last two shows might prove to be different.

Everyone stays here for about four days, two show days and two off days (read, sleeping, eating, not sightseeing).
Then I am the one left behind for the next eight - to nine weeks.
But fear not readers, I have BIG plans.

People always ask me 'What does it feel like to be back?'-
I am not sure what is missing from that question but something is...
I am always a bit tangled and confused for a few weeks-
There are large differences, language, concentration of people, driving versus riding trains/buses...looking for a piece of clothing that is in the 'other' hemisphere.
A lingering feeling of displacement.
Also, my constant internal feeling of needing to always be doing...
So, when I sleep through the first alarm, or do nothing with my first forty minutes beyond coffee, loading the washer, and trying to will an email to appear...I have a hovering sense of failing to fulfill the days potential.
Meanwhile, another simultaneous truth could be -Wow! Look- it's all happening...
Venice and Stockholm last month, rock shows in Australia this week-

Also breaking news from "our" garden (so please note that if you are someone other than me reading this- (hey call it what it is- my journal)-here is an example of Z's new project that just irritates me to no end- as I had to change that sentence)

I think for the first time (what ten years?)
The wisteria is going to bloom!

Saturday, September 12, 2015

"...the wind is low, the birds will sing..." A recap of Venice in photos

Venice is so dense that I almost felt that people coming in (off some ridiculously large cruise ship) just for an afternoon might have basically learn as much as we did in five days.  Basically, I felt the city for a visitor was unknowable.
More than unknowable, unreachable, with its dead ends, and parts of the city accessed only by water.
Even when I read that the city parts built on just pylons for support, I didn't connect that with the fact that areas have limited green areas.  We saw many,many pet dogs but no wildlife, except for pigeons and mosquitoes. When we came upon a park, we realized we had strayed onto an island as opposed to what I think was once marsh land.  But I write this in ignorance because as I wrote before, I did no reading on Venice before taking our trip.


"...waters rise...drown the one seems surprised... or Venice part 3

This morning I am feeling not exactly manipulated...but I can see how much of my time is directed by the changes in how I use technology each year.
I want to write a post here about our trip to Venice before too many other events happen and start to overwrite my ability to recall the trip.
Then as I go through my photos I start to realize how many I have on my computer- because of course the amount of storage keeps increasing.  But then I also think of how many photo graphs are on back up drives, or burned onto discs potentially not accessible by today's devices.  I start to get that uneasy, feeling that my time is constantly wasted.
I started this blog because when we were traveling, getting an internet connection wasn't that easy- and sending emails to multiple people with all the photos attached was hard, and the rate of responses, slow or not at all.
So, by starting a blog I had a log of where I had been, and I got to leave it to other people to see where I was.  I thought this might also alleviate the guilt some of my friends had- when they would not be in contact for a long time.
But many people used blogs as vehicles for some greater purpose and so blogs moved from blogger to other hosting sites, or people folded their blogs into webpages of their own.  Other tech changes happened that seem to impinge on the blogger sites functionality such as the ability to follow or leave comments.
I accepted this and just kept going because I am invested- and I like to see when I was in a certain place. 
My memory has never been very exact- I seem to lack the type of focus and discipline that allows people to be recite passages of text.  I have lived in many, many places which makes the situation even more difficult, so I have always kept some form of a diary.  This is why even as no one I know who had a blog maintains theirs anymore, I still use mine.  (I do have a vague sense that blogger and all its content will just disappear one day).

I am not sure why I have digressed so far from my main point-
Perhaps because we have a derby game to go to today, tomorrow ten people are coming for a late lunch early dinner, then we leave the day after.
Upon arriving to our other home, we have to deal with a broken car, and we both have more travel the same week.
We leave on a Tuesday and arrive on a Thursday.
We traverse a lot of time lines and distance while our experiences is simply the view from within a cramped and crowded space- with short breaks inside large airports with possible fresher air than the plane, but nothing that seems as if I could attach the word 'fresh' to it. A large plane, to an insanely large plane, to potentially that same plane, to what passes as a small plane- and finally into fresh air to walk across a tarmac.  Fuzzy brains, furry mouths, smelly and seemingly (to the one day work commuters) over-packed we will find ourselves in a different season, for the third time this year.
Okay- so Venice-
Five days was a good amount of time- we traversed the city on foot, and the weather was in the 90s and humid.  Our airbnb apt. was good value, and a good pick, not in the center of the center of the incredible amount of tourists, but our directions were not clear and our host was late- so we had a rough start.
The Biennale was amazing-and MONA seems to have taken their lead from this art festival.  I would go back, specifically for the festival.
Also the Opera was a bit modern for my tastes but the Fenice was gorgeous.

Venice Biennale Arte Part 2

As I sit in my kitchen in Stockholm, wearing light clothing, with the early evening light bright enough to create the illusion that summer is still happening. But, Swedish summer, with its ordinary highs of 23-25 c.  I find it hard to remember that humid, dense heat that was just last week in Venice, topping 30 each day.
I am ruminating on this fact because one of my favorite exhibits was one that we found without intention.  We were both hungry and a bit tired, and I clearly remember taking a photo of the introduction poster, and yet I can't find it now to tell myself (or anyone reading this) who it was.  


The Beezy / Brian Eno exhibit was almost as I imagined it, paintings along a steep staircase, in an unused, very old building.  What I hadn't imagined was that there would be a warning notice put up, as the weather that day was so hot, it was breaking records.  We did make it to the top but again, but we didn't linger more than about 5 minutes per section.

 Here is the view from the top.

A few random pieces-
This may have been from the Cindy Sherman curated area
Part of Macedonian's exhibit- a series that comprised the smoking of the whole cigarette

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

The Biennale Arte Festival Venice Part. 1 Fiona Hall in the Australia building

Zok and I decided (sort of randomly) to go to Venice for five days.
We didn't really go away last year because we took that road trip in the U.S. early in the year.  I did my side trip to the U.K. on my own while he was on tour.  
Venice was a marvel, and I felt pangs that I hadn't researched the city properly before going.  Zok booked tickets to the Opera weeks in advance, and I researched the Biennale Arte festival before we left but that was all the advancing we did.
 Possibly, no matter what research I had done, I would still have had only a limited amount of energy because we had hot, humid weather the entire trip.  I did my best but I find heat very, very taxing. Taking in all the art up for the Biennale under the bests of circumstances would have been a challenge.  I am always grateful to see even bits and pieces.

The Biennale had exhibits all over the city as well as a main concentration of exhibits at 'Arsenale' and 'Giardini' the Giardini has the permanent structures for participating countries. The buildings are purpose built by each country. I had read that Australia opened their building in time for the festival (the first 21st century building added to Giardini).  Although the impression I had from the article was that the building (a modern cube) was inside a derelict shell ala 'grand designs) But instead, you walk along and each country has a unique building, along a sort of boulevard. This boulevard was how we noticed that we had only been in the floating part of Venice, which meant very little vegetation.  Whereas, here there were trees, and small parks.
   I really liked the exhibit there, by Fiona Hall-
I do not like taking too many photos within a museum or installation so here is a link:

I thought (incorrectly) that we would pass exhibits as we wandered around Venice, but they were actually a bit hard to find, more like a treasure hunt.
The island were Arsenale is located, did have installations all over the island- 
like this- piece hanging in a dry dock