Life

End of Summer

it is hard to believe that summer vacation has ended and the kids are all back at school.  the past couple of weeks have been busy with adjusting to waking up early, to new school schedule and new friends and teachers.  so far though, everyone seems to be doing ok, including me.  my youngest daughter started kindergarten this year and i wasn't sure how i would feel.  but you know what?  we are both doing really well and we were both really ready for this!!  time for a new chapter in my life.

i am currently working towards an open studio in November.  my building is hosting it, so many of the artists in my building will be participating and we hope to put on a good opening.  i will have more details in the coming weeks.

here are some photos from our various outings this summer.  we truly loved exploring the new england area this summer.  we thoroughly loved the many diverse beaches and enjoyed many of the museums Boston has to offer.  i can't believe it has already been a year since we moved here.  and now, i'm looking forward to what this second year will bring for our family.  thank you for joining me on our journey here and keeping up with our goings on.  what are some memories from your summer?

 giant inflated bunnies in downtown Boston

giant inflated bunnies in downtown Boston

 taking the ferry out to Spectacle Island

taking the ferry out to Spectacle Island

 view of Boston from ferry

view of Boston from ferry

 fun clouds...please excuse my dusty camera lens...

fun clouds...please excuse my dusty camera lens...


Studio Space

it has been a while - i apologize!  life has been full and hectic with many end-of-school-year activities for the kids.  and added to that busyness, i just moved into a studio space that i'm sharing with another painter!!  really excited about the work space and looking forward to producing work in that space.  the studio is in a large building in the SOWA area, the South End of Boston, that houses many artists studio spaces.

i am biking to work now, and what can i say? i am no Lance Armstrong and can't even begin to aspire to that. :)  i'm more like a little old lady hobbling along, but i'm hoping i'll get better at this after my body gets over the shock of the distance i have to cover on my bike.

here's the view from the street of my building.  will hopefully be able to share with you some new work i produce there. :)

Puppet Slam on May 16th

it has been a full month.  we celebrated a birthday as we came to the end of the month - my youngest daughter turned 5.  it is hard to believe how big she is getting!  we are also seeing the slow recession of the snow.  we are impatient for spring weather, but the warmth is slow to take over.  there are still small mounds of snow and we wonder when we will see the last of it?

my shadow puppet project is finally coming together! last week, i managed to run through my entire piece, minus the music, to the class.  this week is our last class and i will be performing for the class again with the music.  i have been busy rehearsing at home.  i tell you, it hasn't been easy.  because i am rehearsing for a performance, i find that i must minimize all the moments where things can go wrong. but there's also a fun element to that, that some of the magic of a performance comes from the very fact that i can't control it perfectly.

some background info about my shadow puppet project: it is around 10 mins long, set to the music of Erik Satie.  a while back, i had written a novella titled, "Winter With Satie" and the story is about a young pianist who is crushed by certain events in her life and withdraws from the world by closeting herself in her home.  she encounters the ghost of Satie and this encounter sets off the healing process for the young woman.

i couldn't use the entire story for this short performance, so i am excerpting the most important part of my story, the young pianist's encounter with Satie, for the shadow puppet performance.

if you are in the Boston area and would like to see my performance, i will be performing "Winter With Satie" at the Puppet Showplace Theater on May 16th, 8pm, during the Puppet Slam.  this is an event for adults and teens.  i have been asked by the Puppet Showplace Theater to warn you that their Puppet Slams usually sell out, so if you plan to come, i would recommend getting the tickets early.  you can purchase tickets online here.  i also know that the Brookline Public Library has passes for the Puppet Showplace Theater you can check out.  with the pass, you can get up to 4 tickets for half price, a really good deal!

i hope you can join me on May 16th - there will be some great performances from puppeteers who know what they are doing! :)

here are some more "work in progress" photos:

 A fellow classmate and i practising with our shadow puppets

A fellow classmate and i practising with our shadow puppets

 there was a lot of cutting involved...

there was a lot of cutting involved...

 part of a scene from my performance

part of a scene from my performance

An Evening with Wangechi Mutu

one of the great things about moving to Boston is that i have opportunities to tap into the many schools that make up this city.  earlier this week, i attended a lecture hosted by MassArt.  the speaker was Wangechi Mutu, an artist whose work i have admired for some time.  she is a couple of years older than me and i often imagine perhaps her paths and mine crossed during our childhood in Nairobi. :)  her works have often felt familiar yet strange to me.  they feel very organic and fluid, qualities that i strive to achieve in my own work.  it was wonderful to hear Wangechi Mutu talk, especially about her inspirations and the motivations behind some of her pieces.  it helped to add depth to my understanding of her work.  she has a beautiful website which you can find here.

below is one of her works, titled: My Strength Lies, 2006.

i have a new project in the works.  it is again an evidence of the opportunities that surround me.  you might be interested to know that it's a medium where i am able to marry my writing with my art. :)  will share soon!

A Sweet Spot

Last week, my girls had their February break.  we decided this year, after the ridiculous amounts of snow we have been getting in the Boston area, we must escape for a short bit.  so we made our way to San Clemente, CA.

 

 San Clemente Beach and pier

San Clemente Beach and pier

there was a lot of beach time and lots of boogie boarding, even though the water was freezing cold! the weather was perfect, making our getaway truly sweet and enjoyable.  San Clemente has now become one of our favourite places on the west coast.

we even managed to squeeze in a visit to the Mission in San Juan Capistrano.  the ruins were beautiful and there were even some fun activities for the children.  they made adobe bricks and panned for gold!

we returned home to even more snow - the mountains of snow grew while we were gone! we keep wondering how much longer the snow will fall...