10 February 2014

Monday miscellany

The narrowest street in London (via)

Mindfulness (a personal definition) - if you have no memory of eating that biscuit, then you have not eaten it; and if on going to the biscuit package to get the uneaten biscuit you find it more depleted than you remember, just never mind, because invisible biscuits have no calories. But, when eating this biscuit, take small bites and pay attention

Bag making, pouch making? There's a roundup of free tutorials here. And more here. And no doubt elsewhere.


Headline of the week (as seen on the Londonist):  Rare iguanas found in socks at Heathrow.


This beautiful book (photo from here) is Copernicus's autograph manuscript of De revolutionibus, in which he presents his theory that the planets, Earth among them, revolved around the sun - rather than everything revolving around the Earth. The book was published just before Copernicus's death in 1453; the manuscript was acquired by the Jagiellonian Library in Krakow in 1956 and is kept in a locked case in a locked room. 


Family history - my grandmother, mother, aunt, me, and doll Bärbel (and long-forgotten cat) in Quebec, spring 1954. Aunt Else is wearing trousers (we lived in a skiing town in the Laurentians) and everyone is wearing handknits - those women always had something on the needles. I believe it was on this very day, thanks to my aunt's yellow cardigan and white blouse, that we had a conversation about colour combinations and how usually yellow and white doesn't have enough contrast to be put together. What about with grey, I asked, looking at the grey-white landscape and thinking of a lemon yellow, pale enough to be almost white. Since then I've learned a lot more about colour values, contrasts, tones - ah, who could imagine what lay ahead, especially the miles of knitting?


Showing in London till 28 February - ceramicist James Tower - "in a final flowering lasting nearly a decade, [he made] large glazed forms whose decorations, sometimes abstract, sometimes based on shapes and patterns found in nature, are paintings in three dimensions."
"The longer he continued working, the greater appeared his desire to exploit the irreconcilable hybridism of his making: a breadth of intellectual reference to astrophysics, atonal music or folk art was matched with a desire to explore distant ceramic traditions, whether the tiled buildings of Central Asia or the Renaissance terracotta figures of the Della Robbia family.  
"He acknowledged the specific history of clay in its many applications, because, like these examples from the past, he intended to transcend it.  In notes made towards the end of his life, Tower wrote that 'the quality which I aim for is perhaps best defined as a sense of completion.  A longing for a serene harmonious whole which contains dynamism and vitality, satisfying our intellectual and spiritual needs.  Forms which satisfy this need alleviate the sense of angst and release us into a world where abounding energy is held in a calm restraint.'"

1 comment:

Plum Cox said...

What a lovely miscellany! Thanks for sharing. Particularly love the narrow street and your family photo.....