Tag Archives: art

Copenhagen

I have a secret! Mr. Michie surprised me on Valentine’s by telling me he was taking me to our beloved city for a short break! I almost passed out with delight! We bundled up and walked through the snow to some of our favourite places and made some new discoveries along the way too. We ate delicious food, lit candles in our apartment and watched the river go by at night. It was very hygge!

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Our view of the river.

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Le Gourmand on Værnedamsvej. This street is the “mini Paris” of Copenhagen.

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Blomsterskuret, the most amazing flower shop. Also located on Værnedamsvej.

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Tulips for sale at Blomsterskuret.

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Snow laden branches.

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A walk in the snow.

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Lunch at the Louisiana Museum.

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Physichromie 497, Carlos Cruz-Diez at the Louisiana Museum.

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A different way to view the world, Louisiana Museum.

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Juicy Burger Order.

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Juicy Burger potatoes.

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Brisket, sweet pickles and mac ‘n cheese at Warpigs.

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Hushpuppies with pimento cheese at Warpigs.

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Warpigs

Lumiere London 2016

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Mr. Michie met me last night in town after work and we went on a walking adventure: Lumiere London. A selection of international artists lit up London and it was magical!

These are just a few of my shots. It was freezing outside, but the atmosphere was just incredible! They had shut down Regent’s Street so you could easily manoeuvre around, which was fantastic. Seeing Westminster Abbey lit up like that was amazing; it was surreal. I’ve had a few opportunities to work on projection projects like this, which made me appreciate what these artists have done even more. It was a really fun date night in London.

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Copenhagen: Art

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The main purpose for our trip to Copenhagen, was a selfish one on my part. I wanted to see an exhibition at the Louisiana Museum. They were holding a Yayoi Kusama retrospective. I have long been a fan of this woman and the exhibition did not disappoint!

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Kusama left Japan and moved to the states in 1957, first to Seattle before settling in New York. There she became a fixture within the avant-garde. She mixed with and influenced the work of Andy Warhol and others. She considered Eva Hess and Joseph Cornell close friends. She designed “happenings” all over NYC, usually involving nudity and conceived to protest the Vietnam War. She moved back to Japan in 1972 and slowly became forgotten. But not by everyone! Over the last 10 or so years, I have seen such a resurgence of her presence and it makes me tremendously happy.

The Louisana and Kusama have a strong relationship. She is truly appreciated by the museum and I can tell you by the number of people that flocked to the exhibit, she is worshiped by the people as well.

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The exhibition was all encompassing. Three of her pumpkin statues greeted you in the courtyard. The show moved through her life and work, including films and sketchbooks. The scale truly gets you. The size of some of her pieces are almost unreal. They dwarf you. You don’t just enter her installations you also become a part of them. You are totally encompassed within them, the floors, walls, ceilings all covered in her polka dots.

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I was delighted to see her pumpkins and I was especially delighted to see and take part within the “Obliteration Room”. Where visitors were given different colored polka dot stickers and allowed to place them on any surface of the white room. The room gradually becomes obliterated by polka dots.

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There is something so unique about this museum. The modern design; the light and openness created by expansive windows; and the surrounding grounds filled with the joys of nature and one hell of a breathtaking view across the sound, all work to add the magic of the place. Seeing Kusama’s work exhibited within their space made it all the more special.

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Ai Weiwei

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Last Saturday, we went to see Ai Weiwei at the Royal Academy. We got there about thirty minutes before the doors were due to open, affording us time to look at and sit amongst his Tree sculptures that now fill the Royal Academy’s courtyard. The piece offers a calm and somewhat uncomplicated introduction to his work. One that is in stark contrast to many of the pieces currently housed inside the Royal Academy’s walls.

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The doors opened at 10:00am. We collected our tickets and headed straight into the show. Each room offered a specific insight into Ai’s life and work – celebrating his use of found materials; his creative originality in blending the old with the new; and putting front and centre his will to challenge the establishment that has for so long sought to suppress his views.

Walking out and mulling what we had observed over lunch, it was evident that Ai’s work had profoundly affected the both of us. Each piece was a statement and a question. Through wood, iron, porcelain, marble, and many other materials Ai made us question our place in the world.

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In particular we were both struck by his piece ‘Straight’. Constructed from reclaimed rebar from the damaged school buildings, following the 2008 Sichuan earthquake, the piece is a powerful symbol. Weighing in at 150 tonnes it is a poignant reminder of the strength and solidarity of the Sichuan people following the massacre. It is a also testament to Ai’s own endeavours to seek answers for the parents and families of the children killed due to the poor construction of the school buildings.

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This was the tip of the iceberg. Not one piece in the exhibition is superficial – to be taken at face value. Each room implores you to engage with Ai’s story. And it is a deeply meaningful one; fraught with the scars of persecution.

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{Guest post by Mr. Michie // Photos by Mrs. Michie}

Through Different Eyes

The past few days I’ve been planning for a class I’ll be teaching in September. I have my own ideas about this project and where I want to take it, but I also don’t want to hinder anyone’s creativity.

Everyone sees the world differently through their own eyes. I’m excited to see how each person approaches the task at hand and what their final outcome will be.

A Mountain Range of Paint

As we moved into the Easter Break, one of the things on my To-Do list was to scrape back the oil paint from the palettes so we could re-use them once we return to school.

There is something satisfying about scraping all of the paint off, by this point it has become almost gooey, gummy even. As I smeared it across some newspaper to wipe my knife clean, I happened to look down and noticed all the little waves and crests and ridges that had formed. It was my own little ocean or mountain range of oil paint.

The way one color moved into the next, pattern but no pattern, rhythm and flow. It made me smile, it was almost a miniature work of art in itself.

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Christmas in Denmark

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It’s only February, I’m not too late to share this post with you, right? Well, I hope not, life is just whizzing by me at the moment and I have yet to manage to get this post finished and out. So, I’m crossing it off of my To-Do list and sharing my love of Copenhagen with you, because after recent events, Copenhagen needs all the love we can give it.

I’m sure you guessed from some of my previous photographs over the month of December and my opening statement, that we in fact, spent Christmas in Copenhagen.It was BEAUTIFUL! It snowed on Christmas day and little bits here and there after that. It was frosty, there were paper stars lit and hanging in everyone’s windows, Christmas trees twinkling in front of apartment buildings and shops. It was magical.

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We walked and walked and walked and discovered and explored some areas we had not been to previously. We visited Tivoli and their magical Alpine Christmas market. It was even more dazzling as it had snowed the day before and fresh snow blanketed everything in sight. All of the Christmas Market shops were set up in little chalets and on the back of them a bird house was attached with silhouettes of birds and hearts and stars. These “bird houses” were the boxes that housed the smoke machine that would send smoke plumming out of the chimneys on the little shingled roofs like a real house. It was very cozy, indeed!

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There were Christmas trees lit around the Alpine Christmas village. The lights twinkling out from the snow laden branches. We stopped at Andersons to taste the famous pork sandwich that they only serve during this festive season and of course we picked up some mandelhorns for dessert! We saw the water and light show in the lake, scored to The Nutcracker and picked up a few surprises for family and friends.

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When we felt too cold we would grab a hot chocolate or find a coal pit they had set out in various places of the park to stand with others and warm our hands. We finished our evening with a strawberry jam and sugar crepe from a charming little stall and sat in a sleigh to eat it, very romantic! Oh, these are the things that dreams are made of!

We visited the Louisiana Museum again and I got to walk in The Riverbed! I made it! It was also a red letter day because I finally got to see a Louise Bourgeois spider in person, it has become a running joke with us, as every time I have had the opportunity to see one in person we have missed it for one reason or another.

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I love museums but I do have a few favorites and the Louisiana is in the top 10! Of course looking at all this gorgeous artwork builds up an appetite and we needed to stop for a snack! I chose this amazing looking apple roulade. Needless to say, I ate every single bite!

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The Louisiana at night:

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We made a few more discoveries this time, playing get lost and winding through beautiful neighborhoods and shopping districts. We feasted on delicious food and went to Emmery’s for hot coffee and fresh chocolate cinnamon buns for breakfast. We watched the snow softly fall while we sat bundled up on the couches, with the view of the river stretched out before our floor to ceiling windows. The riverboats going by were strewn with lights and one of the water buses even had a little tree perched on the back of the boat.

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I think that Denmark is a land of dreams. It is a place I could quite happily pick up and move to without a second thought. As soon as I leave, I long to return. Hopefully it won’t be too long as I hear those streets calling my name.

This was our view as we were packing up to leave:

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Of course when checking out, you have to write your name on the wall:

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Somehow a stowaway managed to get into our luggage. We found this little nisse bundled up in our bed!

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Submarine Sandwich

Well, PES has done it again! I first mentioned them here a few years ago. I discovered him while searching for engaging stop motion animation clips to show some students. Boy, did I hit a home run with this guy!

His follow up to Western Spaghetti, was Fresh Guacamole, it is a super duper adorable, marvelous, and incredibly innovative piece of film making.

PES’ new film, Submarine Sandwich, is just as overwhelmingly astounding. They simply get more and more sophisticated with each film, yet it still retains it’s charm!