I thought I might paint this week, but, alas, I did not manage to do that. I think I’m still winding down from the Florida Folk Festival. I’ll have to wind back up tomorrow, so I hope I get this wind-down thing right before then. We ordered blanks last week and tomorrow, our package arrives. Then we will have to get busy dyeing again. We have special orders to fill and we have to replace as many as possible of the things we sold at the Florida Folk Festival. We are thankful for the special orders. Without them, we might be tempted to put off the dyeing, since we don’t have any other events on our calendar right now.
I hoped winding down might include painting but, apparently, it includes shopping and playing lots of iPad games. Oh, and watching movies about painting. I watched “Big Eyes” and I watched “Mr. Turner” and I watched part of “Georgia O’Keeffe.” I’ve seen that last one over and over, so I didn’t need to watch the whole thing. I get too angry at Stieglitz after a while and I have to turn it off.
I used to wonder about Georgia O’Keeffe. The artist, not the movie. I had seen her work in books and I wasn’t sure if her fame was due to her work or due to the ardent promotion by Stieglitz. Seeing small reproductions, I couldn’t see the value of the work. It just didn’t move me. Then our local museum hosted an exhibit of her work and I got to see it in person. Little photographs in books do not do it justice.
In person, you can see the depth and beauty of the colors. You can feel the emotion that went into the work. Once I had seen the actual paintings, I understood that she earned her fame herself. Stieglitz was a genius at promotion, sure, but O’Keeffe was a genius at painting. I saw the paintings and I knew.
That’s one reason my personal bucket list contains so many museums. Real paintings are full of life and spirit that reproductions can’t capture. I want to visit the National Gallery. I want to visit the Musee d’Orsay. I want to visit the Van Gogh Museum. I want to visit the Louvre. Again. Yes, I visited the Louvre once. I did. I was on tour with the FJC Chorale and the Louvre was on our list. The first time the bus dropped us off there, the museum was closed. You’d think a tour bus driver would know which days the Louvre is closed but that was not the case. We sang on the steps (this was 1973; there was no I.M. Pei pyramid there yet) until the bus came back for us. The bus brought us back another day and dropped us off again – an hour before closing time.
I had one hour to see all I could see of the Louvre. I remember the Winged Victory of Samothrace. I remember the Raft of the Medusa. I remember jumping up and down to try and see the Mona Lisa over the heads of the other tourists. I remember being out of breath from running and wanting to weep for all the things I didn’t have time to see.
The world is full of beauty. I want to see as much of it as I can. I want to create some of it, too. I do, but this week I was busy winding down. That doesn’t mean I didn’t accomplish anything.