“nothing to gain and nothing to lose”

Studio news/blog

The play-pretend queen found a story about a ‘flute player”, and she would like to share it with you….


“A new flute was invented in China.  A Japanese master musician discovered the subtle beauties of its tone and brought it back home, where he gave concerts all around the country.  One evening he played with a community of musicians and music lovers who lived in a certain town.  At the end of the concert, his name was called.  He took out the new flute and played one piece.  When he was finished, there was silence in the room for a long moment.  There the voice of the oldest man was heard from the back of the room:  “Like a god!” 

Sketchbook page. Mixed media

The next day, as this master was packing to leave, the musicians approached him and asked how long it would take a skilled player to learn the new flute.  “Years,” he said.  They asked if he would take a pupil, and he agreed.  After he left, they decided among themselves to send a young man, a brilliantly talented flutist, sensitive to beauty, diligent and trustworthy.  They gave him money for the living expenses and for the master’s tuition, and sent him on his way to the capital, where the master lived.

The student arrived and was accepted by his teacher, who assigned him a single, simple tune.  At first he received systematic instruction, but he easily mastered all the technical problems.  Now he arrived for his daily lesson, sat down, and played his tune – and all the master could say was, “Something lacking.” The student exerted himself in every possible way,  he practiced for endless hours, yet day after day, week after week, all the master said was, “something lacking.” He begged the master to change the tune, but the master said no.  The daily playing , the daily “something lacking” continued for months on end.  The student’s hope of success and fear of failure became ever magnified, and he swung from agitation to despondency.

Finally the frustration became too much for him.  One night he packed his bag and slinked out.  He continued to live in the capital city for some time, longer, until his money ran dry.  He began drinking.  Finally, impoverished, he drifted back to his own part of the country.  Ashamed to show his face to his former colleagues, he found a bat far out in the countryside.  He still possessed his flutes, still played, but found no new inspiration in music.  Passing farmers heard him play and send their children to him for beginners’s lessons.  He lived this way for years.

One morning there was a knock at  his door.  It was the oldest past-master from his town, along with the youngest student.  They told him that tonight they were going to have a concert, and they had all decided it would not take place without him.  With some effort they overcame his feelings of fear and shame, and almost in a trance he picked up a flute and went with them. The concert began.  As he waited behind the stage, no one intruded on his inner silence.  Finally, at the end of the concert, his name was called.  He stepped out the stage in his rags.  He looked down at his hands, and realised that he had chosen the new flute.

Now he realized that he had nothing to gain and nothing to lose.  He sat down and played the same tune he had played so many times for his teacher in the past.  When he finished, there was silence for a long moment.  Then the voice of the oldest man was heard speaking softly from the back of the room:  ” Like a god!” 

quoted from a book I received as a gift recently called: “Free Play” by Stephen Nachmanovitch

Sketchbook page. Mixed media

Anyway, I hope you all had a wonderful Easter-weekend! Take care…xxx

Rabbit! where did you hide those eggs, girl? (detail of a work which I will tell you more about later)

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Dark side of Christmas

Art portfolio- my work, Studio news

Titles of work from top left to right: “Don’t go there” and “When wishing still helped” Bottom left and right: “When the rooster crows” and “Hus met lang ore”

Christmas? No, “Don’t even go there”…

Did she believe in Christmas? Yes, she used to…”when wishing still helped”

which was during a time “Before the rooster crows”.

Now all she wants is to turn into a ‘Hus met lang ore” (*see footnote) – artist statement

Dear friends,

So the exhibition “Kers Nag” opens tomorrow at the Breytenbach gallery, in Wellington, and you are invited. It runs until the end of January 2018.

Invitation

Initially I received an invitation to participate in a show titled: “Dark side of Christmas”. Well while the work was in transit, I was told that the show’s title changed, since the board didn’t feel comfortable with the ‘dark side’.

anyway…don’t know if my contribution will still fit in, but here it is….feel free to decide for yourself.

*footnote:  “husse met lang ore” =

 When somebody is very nosey and keep on asking a question you do not want to answer you say “husse” and if they keep on asking you say “husse met lang ore”(husse with long ears).

The saying is supposedly from Dutch origin. They used to say “husse met je neus ertussen” (husse with your nose in between).
It was an answer to the question”what is for supper?” The Dutch verb “hutselen” or “hutsen” means to mix something, eg. a “hutspot” is a kind of stew, a mix of potato, carrots and onions.

 

 

Work those fingers to the bone

Art portfolio- my work

 

"Work those fingers to the bone" 2016 Cotton thread, batting and rubber 25 x 18 cm

“Work those fingers to the bone” 2016 Cotton thread, batting and rubber 25 x 18 cm

“Borduurwerk is die handwerk wat die algemeenste deur vroue w^ereldwyd gedoen word.  Elke vrou weet hoe om naaldwerk te doen en die begeerte om hierdie mag vir iets meer as net gebruiksartikels aan te wend, is by die meeste vroue ingebore.” Dawid C. Minter

Cross my heart: e-book

Art portfolio- my work

I am back home and currently finding my rhythm  and routine again after a lovely time in Cape Town.

I had so much fun at the opening night of my solo exhibition: “Cross my heart” (which opened on the 10th of February)!  Thanks to everyone who helped in front and behind the scenes.  I also had a chance to catch up with some old friends, and made some new ones!

I will post some images of the opening night as soon as I can.

In the mean time Erdmann Contemporary gallery made this e-book of my work currently on exhibition until the 31st of March 2015:

http://issuu.com/erdmanncontemporary/docs/e-book_-_individual_pages

I look forward to hear your thoughts.

Who needs courage?

Art portfolio- my work
"Who needs courage?" Embroidery on rubber and found objects, 2014/5

“Who needs courage?” Embroidery on rubber and found objects, 2014/5 (photo credit: Dejavu Photography)

A lion-finger-puppet was the inspiration for this piece.  The finger-puppet belonged to my 4 year old son, and   I figured that since he doesn’t play with it, I might as well use it.  So the actual toy is stitched onto the rubber. Boy was he upset!! but we’ve reached and agreement of sorts …(strange – as soon as they see that mother is having fun with their toys, only then do they want to start playing with it!)

Anyway, so a lion represents courage to me, surely because of the Wizard of Oz story:

The Cowardly Lion is a character in the fictional Land of Oz created by American author L. Frank Baum.[1] He is an African Lion, but he speaks and interacts with humans.

Since lions are supposed to be “The Kings of Beasts,” the Cowardly Lion believes that his fear makes him inadequate. He does not understand that courage means acting in the face of fear, which he does frequently. Only during the after effects of the Wizard’s gift, when he is under the influence of an unknown liquid substance that the Wizard orders him to drink (perhaps gin) is he not filled with fear. He argues that the courage from the Wizard is only temporary, although he continues to do brave deeds while openly and embarrassedly fearful. (wikipedia)

In a sense I needed some courage for this piece above, because it was the first time I experimented with combining a little bit of oil paint & thread on rubber.

I found this quote recently (wish I could remember where)….

“Courage is to tell the story of who you are with your whole heart!”

love that!

(*This work: Who needs courage?” will be on show during my 6th Solo exhibition #Crossmyheart at the Erdmann Contemporary Gallery in Cape Town. Opening on the 10th of February 2015- hope to see you there…)