Monday, June 23, 2014

Midsummer sun, wild orchids and blackbird song

As this is mostly an Artsy & Frome-fanclub blog I don't generally comment on the weather but this solstice as been so celestially sumptuous it amounts to an event in itself. Frome quirkiness  shone at the annual Town Cryer competition in the park, each contestant picking a historical news item ~ my favourite was the Peacehaven announcement of the death of Elizabeth Barrett-Browning with an opening yell How Do I - Love Thee - Let Me Count - The Ways.
Sunshine and late dusk means parties in gardens and long walks: Cley Hill in June is smothered with wild orchids including the rare ophrys apifera, bee orchid, which lures its pollinator by pretending to have a bee on it ~ literally a honey-trap.  I haven't yet been swimming at Tellisford weir, but poet Edward Thomas did in 1913, according to his journal. He never survived the first world war but he gave us a name ~ an Adlestrop moment ~ for that sudden private recognition of the extraordinary in the ordinary. The Poetry Society had the charming notion of honouring the precise centenary of this epiphany by asking people to tweet in the sounds they hear at 12.45 on 23rd June. I was outside the Sicilian coffeehouse on Catherine Hill and heard: feet on cobbles, chatter & clatter & Lamb playing in the cafe, aeroplane overhead. If you don't know the poem Adlestrop, or even if you do, you can read it here.
I'll end this entry with a picture of the beautiful walled garden at Mells which has an amazing waterlily pond and luxuriant rose arches, and a pizza oven as well.  And for anyone struggling with a funding application / exhibition / brochure / website, here's a helpful self-promotion tool: the artybollocks generator. Here's my Artist's Statement:
My work explores the relationship between Jungian archetypes and midlife subcultures. With influences as diverse as Kafka and Roy Lichtenstein, new tensions are generated from both simple and complex structures. Ever since I was a child I have been fascinated by the traditional understanding of the zeitgeist. What starts out as hope soon becomes finessed into a hegemony of defeat, leaving only a sense of dread and the unlikelihood of a new order. As shifting phenomena become distorted through diligent and diverse practice, the viewer is left with a testament to the darkness of our future.  You're welcome!

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