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Wednesday, November 28, 2007

'My painting carries with it the message of pain.'

So, I'm reading in front of the fire at Caribou Coffee yesterday when I see a jolly old guy bending over, looking at me closely. 'You looked just like my daughter sitting there and I just had to make sure. She'd have been reading a book too.' I apologized--because that is usually what I do, and I had a mouthful of pumpkin bread. [why?] That's what he asked too. 'Because I wasn't your daughter, I guess,' I mumbled. He assured me it was o.k. to be me [what?] and that in fact, he had just seen her on Thanksgiving; just didn't expect to see her here. Long, boring story short, it pays to look people straight in the eye to see if they are who you think they are. Incidentally, a corollary to 'don't believe everything you think.'

Turkey Day has come and gone, now just a sweet/savory memory. Sadly, our table was short one place as Erica had to stay in D.C. to prepare for exams. Audrey arrived on Thanksgiving Day and spent 4 more days. While here she and I made a pilgrimage to view the travelling Frieda Kahlo exhibit at the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis in honor of the 100th anniversary of Frieda's birthday. Not only were there many of her unique self portraits but there was a collection of never seen before photographs from her personal albums. Some of them showed her in traction after her accident when she was 18 as well as other candids with Diego Rivera and even Leon Trostsky. Seeing her works, born out of her pain--

“I paint self-portraits because I am so often alone, because I am the person I know best.”

with her signature tiny brush strokes and sometimes surrealistic landscapes and still-lifes was such an emotionally charged experience for both of us, sending us straight away for tea and cookies.

While I write, at 5 am, this is the weather report in our part of Minnesota:
10 °F / -12 °C
Windchill: -5 °F / -20 °C
Wind @13 mph from the West (from Julie in N.Dak.!)
Clear

4 comments:

Old Wom Tigley said...

What a nice story, maybe the old chap just wanted a friendly smile as he misses his daughter.
I have never heard of this lady painter before, I like the second pictures, her neck looks very nice.

Marianne said...

Heh, I would've apologized also, for the same reason, how funny and a bit odd of us,eh?
Sorry Erica couldn't make it...
What a wonderful exhibit to get to see! I've always found Frieda and her work fascinating.
Brrrrr! Here the temps are in the 50s and yesterday I believe it got to 61 (according to Bobby), the leaves are still falling and there's STILL plenty more to fall.
Good to hear from you.

Julie Marie said...

When will this D--- wind ever end? It didn't feel bad this morning, even at minus 1 F, because the wind wasn't blowing, but now I can see the flag whipping around again.

Our daughter from Washington, DC has only been home for one Thanksgiving since 1999. Thank goodness we can afford to get her home for Christmas.

Julie

Jo said...

I went to a frieda exhibition at the Tate a couple of years ago and loved it. I enjoyed your little slice of life.