Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Wednesday Wall (Mural, that is)

This gorgeous mural in its very urban environment makes quite a contrast to my last post, doesn't it? I hope you've had a chance to visit Ali's garden and to join the conversation there, where that talented, hard-working, and very generous gardener is taking the time to answer each comment.

As for the mural above, it was painted over the last week as part of the Vancouver Mural Festival which takes place mostly in my neighbourhood. This photo was taken as I walked with my good friend Alison who, with her husband, happened to attend the same Bard on the Beach performance of A Winter's Tale as we did on Saturday night. What a happy surprise, one we immediately capitalised on by arranging the next day's visit.

You'll have noted the very dark sky in the photo. The evening before, Pater and I had stepped out of the Bard Festival tent into a shower and walked the five or so kilometres home from the play along the seawall, the rich fragrance of petrichor so welcome, the pattering on our umbrellas a delight. On Sunday, though, these clouds only hung around to tease, promise -- or threaten, depending on perspective. At least the rain seems to have rinsed the smoke out of the sky. . .


I'm balancing blog-writing against the personal writing I'm doing these days (I've almost completed drafts of three chapters now, and I'm determined to finish this project, with no expectation of what I might do with it once it's all drafted), so that while I've got many ideas of what I'd like to do here, I'm trying not to make promises I can't keep. I will say, though, that I have many more photographs of very impressive murals, and I hope I'll get to tell you about a lovely and inspiring conversation I had with one of the muralists.

And I've booked some flights, made some travel plans for December, so there's that as well for a future post.  .  .

Meanwhile, do be sure to visit Ali's garden via my last post. It's such a treat! 

19 comments:

  1. How beautiful! The juxtaposition of daily urban life and the elegance of the peacock. I marvel at this in Mexico and I'm happy that we can experience some of this in Vancouver. I think it's going to rain. I'm waiting to find out who's speaking at the Brooklyn Book Festival since I'll be there in September and volunteer registration for Vancouver Writers' Festival is opening in August. Time marches on.

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    1. Time is marching indeed, at a very quick pace -- Brooklyn? Wow! you're really having a travelling year -- cool!

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  2. What are you writing about? Will you tell us one day? I am very curious!

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    1. One day. . . it's still quite close to me, but one day. . .

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  3. Lovely! What a treat!
    I would like to have more of such a beautiful street art here
    Dottoressa

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  4. I don't always like street art but this is beautiful , very clever & the artist has real talent .
    Wendy in York

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    1. Yes, this is a juried show -- there's a submission process and much competition from local, national, and international artists.

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  5. Beautiful and so beautifully offsets the dark sky.

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  6. Pretty peacock blues...
    I enjoy seeing random street art and Vancouver seems to have many talented artists...thank you for capturing and sharing this image.
    I am curious what your are writing too...perhaps you'll share it with us.

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    1. I like random street art as well, but the works, as above, I've been talking about are very deliberate, with owners of buildings offering up their walls for the Vancouver Mural Festival.

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  7. Like Wendy in York I have mixed views about street art - possibly because we have so many beautiful old buildings and any street art on them to me isn't art. I realise it may be intellectually clever to juxtapose old and new, but to me it jars. And our street art seems more like graffiti vandalism than art - perhaps we don't have any street artists here? Willing to be corrected by those who know this aspect of UK life better! But the street art you've featured in Vancouver seems more harmonious and definitely artistic. I'll shortly be starting a MOOC on how cities are creating their own cultural heritage - wonder if there will be any street art there!

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    1. See comments above re the Vancouver Mural Festival. These are all recognised artists painting with full sanction after a juried selection process on spaces they've been requested to paint by the owners.... What's a MOOC?

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  8. In that case I'm not sure we have much in the way of true street art! Your process does indeed sound artistic and allays my concerns.
    Massive Open Online Course. Free online courses run by universities across the world. Usually no entry requirements. Taught by experts in the field. You can purchase a certificate on completion for a small fee. Some are now being developed for credit to segue into a university degree. They started in Canada, at the University of Manitoba I believe. Two main providers: Coursera and FutureLearn. I've done courses with both: Paris 1919: the founding of the League of Nations; Introduction to Dutch; French Langue Etrangère from the University of Nantes through the FUN-MOOC platform (level B1+ on the Common European Framework); Korean History... The course runs for a set number of weeks and once you've signed up you usually have ongoing unlimited access to the materials. There is set material each week and a big emphasis on learner discussion - I learned a lot on the Paris 1919 one from fellow students from across the world who were specialists in international law. I don't always finish them, and this is common and expected. With the Dutch one I took it at too busy a time to keep up with the pace of the course, but I can still access the material and continue to progress in my own time but without group discussions. I highly recommend them - do have a look!

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    1. I did the teeniest bit of Google-sleuthing and I see that you had some wonderful work in filling the arches at the New Waverley construction site. That post, though was in 2014, so I'm not sure what's happening there now. I can't believe the city that hosts a fabulous Fringe Festival of theatre won't have a concomitant street art scene!
      Thanks for the explanation about the MOOC, and of course, I did know that but didn't recognize the acronym outside of a teaching context. You've really been making a mockery of the whole concept of "retirement," haven't you?!

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    2. We did indeed have murals at the Waverley arches, but they are now occupied by a vibrant run of cafes and bars and small businesses. I couldn't find anything happening on the Fringe. There are lots of street artists performing music, dance, mime, theatre, but not art. I did find an ongoing project happening very near me: http://www.leithlate.co.uk. I feel I'm being a stuck in the mud artistic conservative, but I don't seem to be able to find it in me to have an overwhelming positive response to the images from the project. Afraid I'll have to store street art with opera in my subjective perception!
      You seem to share the busy retirement syndrome!

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  9. This piece is nostalgic for me. My older brother, Stephen Gibbons-Barrett entered a mural painting contest in Vancouver over 50 years ago. It may have been the first such contest in Vancouver. He won the contest, but his section of fence was stolen, which in the end created good publicity for his art. He continues to paint in his retirement, although Parkinson's is robbing him of much of the joy that his art provides for him. He recently auctioned off many of his paintings as they have downsized from there beautiful place in Mission to live near their children and to have less garden to maintain. Thanks for providing a trip down memory lane for me. It was good to see that murals continue to be appreciated and to promote the artist of the day. Jennifer B

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    1. So cool, Jennifer! Funny, at first when I read this my reaction was "Wow, they had mural competitions in Vanc'r half a century ago?" . . . and then I did the math, and realized that was smack in the middle of the Summer of Love and yep, that makes sense! Back to the future indeed!

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I'd love to hear your response to my post. Agree, disagree, even go off on a tangent, I love to know you're out there, readers. Let's chat, shall we?

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