Kapaleeshwarar Temple, Mylapore – revisited from afar

As I sit here in my office at temperatures hovering above freezing in the unseasonably mild (yes, it’s true!) winter weather I cannot believe it was nine months ago that I was traveling to Chennai (Madras) in India. I first wrote about that trip here and in subsequent posts that week, but  it was only today that I finally got around to processing a few more images from that trip, starting with the Kapaleeshwarar Temple in Mylapore, now a district of the sprawling city.

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As I go through more images I will upload them to my art site and may include a few more here too in other posts.

~Richard

Is this Street Art?

I spotted this sign at a road junction about a mile or so from my house quite some time ago. It made me chuckle and I vowed to get an image of it at some point. Today was that day, so I parked at the local church and walked along the edge of the road to get this shot. It has not been edited other than to sharpen it a little.

I cannot understand what on earth is going on at that junction. There are no sidewalks on any of the roads leading to the lights and it is a fairly busy and dangerous corner. Quite why the local authority would think it sensible to put up a pedestrian controlled light and then a no pedestrian sign is anyone’s guess.

Having “visited” the place I can only assume it is some type of Street Art, perhaps making some deep statement which I am yet to discover…

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~Richard

Vermeer Revisited

Johannes Vermeer (1632-1675) was an astounding Dutch painter who specialized in fairly mundane scenes of 17th century domesticity around his home town of Delft.

I don’t know what possessed me really, but I have recently seen his famous painting from 1665, “Girl with a Pearl Earring” so many times that this image has lodged itself in my brain rather in a similar way to a musical earworm. As a result I spent several hours over the last couple of days revisiting this classic work and adding my own interpretations.

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Girl with No Earring
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Girl with a Razor Blade
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Girl in a Space Helmet

~Richard

Sculpture – Butterfly Effect

Several months ago I created a clay sculpture in the shape of a brain when I was at home and then made holes in it with view to turning it into an unusual piece, experimenting with different glazes. Well, it was only after I put it through a bisque firing that I realized I had used the same clay as my infamous “exploding bowls” that had caused me so many challenges earlier in the year, so I put the idea on hold as to how to finish the project.

Fast forward several weeks and I was reminded that there was an exhibition coming up at the Allinson Gallery at Chester County Art Association, with the theme “Color Obsession” so I stirred myself into a flurry of activity and finally created a work over a couple of weeks. To finish this piece I used wire, ten butterflies cut from an old map and several different colored cans of spray paint in place of glaze. I deliberately sprayed the brain outside on a windy day so that it was not an even covering but rather a series of small specks of different colors, which overlaid. It was a bit of a trial mounting the wire frame and then the ceramic onto a wooden board and then adding a burlap cover, but I was pleased with the effect.

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Today I was even more surprised when I found that Butterfly Effect was the first piece to be sold in the exhibition!

~Richard

Haiku: Eight Hours

Earlier this week we spent an interesting (!) eight hours in the local ER, to a large extent at the behest of my daughter’s pediatrician. Nothing overly serious in the end, but it did give me some thinking time, and the Monty Python Hospital sketch did creep into my mind…

~ Eight Hours ~

Needles and vitals
And the machine that goes ‘ping.’
Emergency Room.

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~Richard

Haiku: Darwin Day

As a biologist today I pay homage through haiku to Charles Darwin, the scientist who proposed the theory of evolution, who was born this day in 1809.

~ Darwin Day ~

A wonderful thing:
species origination
to explain nature.

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Julia Margaret Cameron [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

~Richard

Ephemeral Art: Snow Warning

Today we had our first major snowfall of the season in Southern Pennsylvania. A few inches of wet, sticky snow. I took the opportunity to create a temporary piece of art on the lawn using the yellow paint left over from the yellow submarine oil tank.

This is not only a tribute to the late, great, Frank Zappa, but also a useful warning to all who pass by! Anyone watching be contort to get this sprayed without getting my feet in the way, and shaking the can in the cold air may also have considered this to be a one-off performance art too!
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~Richard

Amazing Glazing

I have been experimenting with some of the glazes at the Art Center, mixing two or three on a bowl in order to see how they come out. So far the results have been quite pleasing and have been able to create a distraction to the imperfections of the asymmetrical bowls that I seem to be producing of late when using the standing potter’s wheel.

I continue to practice and learn and, most importantly, enjoy myself with this pottering about.

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I particularly like this black and white bowl, and the way the Assad Black glaze formed various shades of green where it overlapped onto the white.

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~Richard

#r2bcheerful35 – Health Service glasses

It’s been a long time since I lived in the UK and when I was there my eyesight was better than it is now so I didn’t need glasses for reading. However, it was nice to know the National Health Service (NHS) offered free glasses, at least to the young, old, and less well off members of British society. I checked on their website and it still seems to be the same, so that’s good. When the NHS was established, on 5 July 1948, during Ian’s childhood, it was surely a reason to be cheerful, as it is today, to be able to get your eyes checked out and glasses if you needed them courtesy of the good old “Health Service.”

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Yes, I know these aren’t NHS glasses, but to be honest they’re not too dissimilar from the old black-framed ones that used to be issued when we were kids.

 

~Richard

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