Slightly Off Kilter


My watch battery appears to be winding down.  I thought I had another twenty-five minutes of today left to post up to my blog.  Nope, it’s already 11:53 p.m.  Oops.  I wonder if there are any watch repair places open on Memorial Day.

That’s the thing about holidays, I want to get shit done.  I want to take care of business, if I don’t have to work and I have an extra day off, please be open–grocery store, bank, hardware store, etc.  I have precious time needs and an extra day can really set me up for a while.  But that ‘s the unfortunate thing with holidays, lots of places close.  I know that is supposed to mean take the day off, but that’s not where my brain goes, it goes get shit done!  Now! Go! Go! Go!

And I did get lots done today as well, but I also made sure I got to spend some quality time with Joan at the MOMA.  We went and saw the Stein Collection.  Which if you like Picasso, you’ll love.  And Henri Matisse, you’ll drool.  But truthfully, neither are really my cup of tea.  I have never liked Picasso and I have kept my mouth shut about that for a long time.  I don’t like Cubism.  I don’t take away from the power of the work Picasso did, he’s just not my favorite.  There were, however, some things that I liked.

There was a self-portrait that was quite early on in his career that I had never seen before.  I kept going back to it.  Damn it, I’m not suppose to like your work, but there it was staring frankly back out at me.  There was a tender kind of vulnerability in the face that I don’t think I had seen in his other self-portraits before.  I also really liked the color palette of it–mustards and browns.  I went back more than once to look at it again and discern what it was that drew me.  It was simple, evocative and beautiful.  If I was to buy a Picasso–that would be the one.

Then, double damn it, I saw another I like, from his Cubist period.  Well, fuck me.  There goes my whole identity out the art window.  This was called Guitar on a Table.  And I could see the guitar but it was so abstract that I don’t know that I could have seen it without having first read the title.  Again there was some sort of titular beauty about it that drew me.  I know that part of it was again the color palette.  This was done in mint green and softer canary yellows and a sort of rose color that was very fetching.

Maybe that’s what I don’t like about his work, the color palette.  And Matisse, also, never really has done it for me.  I can see the talent, oh, I cannot deny that Matisse and Picasso aren’t extraordinarily talented, they just don’t really call to me.

The Renoir’s in the collection, though, oh, sigh.  So nice.  So nice to just let my eyes rest in the dappled sunlight of the paintings.  What I find amazing about Renoir’s work is that the subjects themselves upon closer inspection aren’t all that attractive.  However, because the paintings are so lush and rapturous, so resplendent in texture and light and color, the viewer is taken away past the outside visage of the subjects, into their heart.  And there, there they are beautiful; that is something to see.

Gratefully, Joan is a similar kind of museum goer as I, we both like to cruise around quite fast.  This is the beauty of having a membership, I don’t feel guilty about doing just that.  We also had a lovely time sitting in the cafe Museo and catching up on our lives.  I count Joan as one of my best friends in San Francisco.  I absolutely adore her to pieces.  I often times feel that we are on a similar trajectory.  And like with all good friends, watching them have the experience of going through painful things to gain insight and knowledge of themselves helps me.  I know I can do it if she can do it.

Joan is a lovely touchstone of strength and experience.  Some one I can go to and share all my news with and she gets it.  I think I really needed just to sit and sip my latte and get Joan time more than I needed to see the Stein exhibit.  But I’m glad I did go.

For the collection also spoke to a quiet dream of mine, that in which I too am a collector.  A person that discovers artists and supports them.  I like to occasionally dabble with a little crafty thing or two, but I’m not a painter, nor a drawer, or a photographer.  But I am a person that appreciates art and I know I have an eye.  I have an eye for balance and color and what makes sense.  And I definetly have my own aesthetic.

My living space often becomes the template for my artistic expression.  I love decorating and arranging things.  Especially so that they please my eye from every angle.  I need art in my life.  I need beauty.  I need to write and be able to express myself just a reverently as a great painter needs to paint or a courtier needs to do couture.  And because of that, I need art to fill up my creative heart, I need to fill the inspirational well often.  I am so grateful to live in a city with great museums and a thriving arts culture.  I know that LA and New York, Paris and Venice, are supposedly the places to be, and I’m sure a score of others that I am not thinking of off-hand, but since I can’t get to those places on a weekly basis, I am supremely grateful for the MOMA and The Legion of Honor, The DeYoung, and Yerba Buena.  My has to be fed.

And today I got to start expressing myself in my new place.  Not very quickly, but just a few things that I was able to incorporate into the space that would not interfere with the work that will be done over the next few days before I am officially allowed to move in.  I hung some shower curtains in the bathroom and placed a few items in the kitchen.  I also walked around the rooms a number of times just getting a feel for how things are placed and what I will want to put where.

It is really exciting.  And it really helps that I don’t have to pack any boxes up.  Or have a truck ready or people to help me move things up and down stairs.  Although I may need some assistance with a vehicle for next weekend when I can get the couch from Cass.  One truck and one or two extra sets of hands.  Cass said one truck, two big strong men.  I say one truck and just somebody who is as strong as I, for I am more than capable of lifting the back of a couch.

Soon, soon, soon, I will be in my new domicile.  Hanging up the few pieces of art work that I have and arranging this and that.  Supplying my eyes and senses with those things of beauty that inspire me to move forward with my own writing.  I am feeling another book project brewing.  I will be happy to get into my place, get settled and get back to a schedule.

I am so grateful for this little blog, even when it’s way past my bed time, I am happy I get to write.  I may be off my daily schedule, but my heart rests gently in my chest tonight regardless.

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