Archive for June, 2010

Tickle the Ivories!

June 30, 2010

Last week in New York City was the start of a very interesting public art project called “Play Me, I’m Yours!”   Sixty (60) pianos have been placed throughout the City (36 in Manhattan, 10 in Brooklyn, 4 in the Bronx, 6 in Queens and 4 on Staten Island) in open and public spaces and anyone can sit down and play them.  This idea was brought to New York (from England, the brainchild of Luke Jerram) by the Sing for Hope charity and will run through July 5th before the pianos are removed.   Volunteers have been solicited to look after the pianos (unlocking them at 9 a.m. and locking them at 8 p.m., and covering them with plastic tarps if it starts to rain).  What a great project!  I would have loved to have been in New York during this event just to witness and/or experience the music.

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For Chocolate Lovers!

June 29, 2010

Did you know that that ten years ago today, M&M’s candies renamed their “plain” M&M’s to “milk chocolate” M&M’s?  You may wonder why this is significant.  Apparently it was decided that their chocolate was too good to be called plain!  It sound’s like a chocolate kind of day to me!

Here’s a new way to enjoy these candy treats: add a spoonful or two to your coffee instead of sugar for a chocolaty-flavored cup of java!

Here are my favorite chocolate quotations:
“There are four basic food groups: milk chocolate, dark chocolate, white chocolate, and chocolate truffles.”  (Anonymous)
“All I really need is love, but a little chocolate now and then doesn’t hurt!”  (Lucy Van Pelt in Peanuts by Charles M. Schulz)
“I have this theory that chocolate slows down the aging process…. It may not be true, but do I dare take the chance?”  (Unknown)

Be Inspired!

June 28, 2010

Here is a really cute video on art.  This brought a smile to my face.  One of these days, I may just have to pick up a brush and start painting.  Enjoy!

Here are a couple of definitions of “art” from my Cynic’s Dictionary:

“A lie that makes us realize the truth.”  (Pablo Picasso)
“The apotheosis of solitude.”  (Hugh Kenner) The what?

apotheosis

/uh-poth-ee-oh-sis, ap-uh-thee-uh-sis/
–noun, plural -ses  /-siz, -ˌsiz/
1. the elevation or exaltation of a person to the rank of a god.
2. the ideal example; epitome; quintessence.

It Was Inevitable!

June 27, 2010

Today I discovered yet aother new artist (at least new to me).  Aaron Herron, of Urban Color Works, is a talented painter and shows a lot of promise (in my humble opinion).  Situated in the heart of downtown Tulsa (in the historic Philtower Building), this new gallery is cozy and full of beautiful paintings (acrylic as well as oil) in a variety of shapes, colors, and sizes. 

I was unable to escape the open house without purchasing this signed, original acrylic on canvas to add to my growing collection (nor did I expect to).  Prior to the artist signing the piece, I was allowed to choose the orientation (i.e., how I wanted to hang the piece) — it is amazing how different the painting looks depending on which end is up. 

The best news: it fit perfectly into one of the few “holes” of the art laden walls of my apartment.  I am certain that I will visit this gallery again!

Memento of a Massacre!

June 26, 2010

Yestserday was the anniversary of Custer’s Last Stand (in 1876).  General George Armstrong Custer and 262 other men were killed after attacking a Sioux camp near the Little Bighorn.  Led by Crazy Horse, it was the last great Native American victory.

How ironic that the Detroit Institute of Arts picked the anniversary of the famed battle to announce they were going to sell/auction (after 115 years of stewardship)  a silk flag (guidon) that, unlike Custer and his charges, survived the Battle of Little Bighorn.  The reason why?  It’s no longer considered a work of art!

A Method to His Sculpture?

June 25, 2010

During my recent trip to Alabama, I was reintroduced to the artwork of Bruce Larsen, sculptor extraordinaire!  Whimsical, yet creative and many of his pieces seem to be fashioned out of whatever discarded odds and ends are around at the time of inspiration (although I’m sure that he is much more organized in his method; certainly not haphazard in any way).  This photo shows one of his works (a Heron) outside the front of the Eastern Shore Art Center . . . simply fabulous!   Larsen has also produced several pieces for the American Sport Art Museum & Archives and was named the “Sport Artist of the Year” in 2009.

“Salvaging ancient relics to showcase them in a new and greener light is one of the basic aims of Repo-Renaissance art, or Classical sculpture made from recycled materials.”

“My first ambition before becoming an artist was to be an archeologist. I love to search for ancient relics and display them in a new light.”  (Bruce Larsen)

Happy Anniversary!

June 24, 2010

Today marks the second anniversary of The Gun Carryin’ Librarian blog!  What a perfect opportunity for an encore presentation of the demotivator on blogging!  What started as an educational tool has developed into a daily ritual . . . a ritual that I truly enjoy.  I would like to thank all of my faithful readers and followers that have participated (and will continue to participate) in this eclectic trip through life.

Some of my blog stats to date:
Total views: 78,974 (2,826 in 2008; 42,412 in 2009; 33,824 in 2010)
Average views per day: 15 (2008); 116 (2009); 194 (2010)
Busiest day: 293 (Wednesday, March 3, 2010)
Busiest month: 7,036 (March 2010)
Posts: 855
Comments: 226
Categories: 26
Tags: 2,589

eclectic

  /ih-klek-tik/–adjective

1.   selecting or choosing from various sources.
2.   made up of what is selected from different sources.
3.   not following any one system, as of philosophy, medicine, etc., but selecting and using what are considered the best elements of all systems.
4.  noting or pertaining to works of architecture, decoration, landscaping, etc., produced by a certain person or during a certain period, that derive from a wide range of historic styles, the style in each instance often being chosen for its fancied appropriateness to local tradition, local geography, the purpose to be served, or the cultural background of the client.

–noun

5.   Also, eclecticist ih-klek-tuh-sist/, a person who follows an eclectic method, as in philosophy or architecture.

Here Comes the Sun!

June 23, 2010

Yep, it’s summer.  The days are longer, the sun is brighter, and people flock to the beaches, pools, patios, backyards, etc., to lay in the sun and soak up the warm rays.

Some fun sun facts:
Distance from Earth: 149,597,900 kilometers (92,960,000 miles).
Equatorial radius: 695,500 kilometers (432,200 miles).
Equatorial circumference: 4,379,000 kilometers (2,715,000 miles).
Length of day: 25.38 Earth days (609.12 hours).
Age: 4.6 billion years.

For more information visit the NASA page.

heliolatry

\hee-lee-OL-uh-tree\ , noun;

1.  Worship of the sun.

Extra, Extra, Read All About It!

June 22, 2010

Here is a wonderful site (courtesy of the Newseum) that displays the front pages of 811 newspapers from around the world (74 different countries) — these numbers seem to change daily as new content is added.  It is certainly not an exhaustive collection, but impressive nonetheless.  Hover on a dot and the front page is displayed to the right; click on the dot and the frontpage opens in a new window.  You’ll never have to wonder what the headlines are to any of the major city newspapers ever again (and even some of the non-major cities).  This is very cool!  The only Oklahoma papers included (at this point) are the Norman Transcript, the Oklahoman (Oklahoma City), and the Tulsa World.

This could be a great way to practice reading in a foreign language.  However, noticeably absent from the holdings: French newspapers — there are none (yet?)!  There are also no papers from Greece or Poland.  And, if you are wanting to practice your Farsi, don’t pick the Iran Daily, it’s in English!  Surprisingly enough, there were actually 4 or 5 Middle Eastern newspapers in English.  And, there were only a few newspapers from the entire continent of Africa.  But despite what seems to be missing, this is an impressive collection of holdings regardless (who knows, there may even be plans to expand the holding/offerings at a later date).

Click here to start exploring the front pages of newspapers from around the world!  Be careful, you could find yourself spending a lot of time here.

Summer Has Arrived!

June 21, 2010

Summer . . . a long-anticipated time for vacations and relaxation (at least until one has to work for a living or unless you’re a teacher).  Today may be the official first day of summer, but the summer temperatures and conditions seems to have arrived far in advance of today.  I have lived in Oklahoma for over 28 years now and while I have still not gotten accustomed to the sweltering heat of summer, it is much preferred over the bitter cold, sleet, ice, and snow of winter.  I could probably get used to summer-like conditions year-round (I’m thinking Maui), but I would probably then miss the changing of the seasons.  So for now, I’m content to watch the seasons come and go; they each have their own unique characteristics allowing us the opportunity to anticipate their coming.

“A perfect summer day is when the sun is shining, the breeze is blowing, the birds are singing, and the lawn mower is broken.”  (James Dent)

“I love Paris in the summer, when it sizzles.”  (Cole Porter)

“A life without love is like a year without summer.”  (Swedish Proverb)

“The coldest winter I ever spent was summer in San Francisco.”  (Mark Twain)