Thursday, October 17, 2019

Ciwt in NYC Day 2 --- Day 8/193

Walk: Real New York Walking Tour
Distance: 6 Hours, Miles and Miles

Today Ciwt is Waaay Uptown in NYC walking, walking, walking through Harlem, Morningside Heights, and.....

The Met Cloisters Museum.

All new places for Ciwt.  What can be better?  A private Real New York Tour* and a Great Walk.

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

Ciwt in NYC Day 1 --- Day 8/192

Walk: SFO, JFK, maybe around NYC a bit 
Distance: A few blocks, yoga/airport/hotel room stretch

So, Ciwt is looking forward to returning to her favorite midtown hotel for her New York Stay.

Tuesday, October 15, 2019

Catching Up After Blackout, Part IV --- Days 8/188,189, 190, 191

Walk: Not Yet, Working on CIWT and then packing for NYC

Ciwt's blank screen ready to be filled to finish her Post Blackout Catch Up as well as her pre-NYC entries.  Ciwt awards herself a big Gold *

Catching Up after the Blackout, Part III --- Days 8/188,189,190, 191

Walk: Hood

So Ciwt's bags are out for her upcoming trip to New York.  She's looking forward to using and being able to lift her new super lightweight Lipault suitcase (the one on the bottom with price tag still on it).

Catching Up after the Blackout, Part II --- Days 8/188,189,190, 191

Walk: SFMOMA (Mythos, Psyche, Eros: Jess in California

Jess, Fig. 4 Far and Few...:Translation #15, 1965, 1965, oil on canvas mounted on wood with velvet

Beatles bubblegum card

So while New York was exploding with the abstract, unemotional Pop, Minimalist and Conceptionalist movement and museum wall size canvases in the 60's, the relatively small and loose circle of San Francisco artists were intentionally out of step.  Doing smaller, more intimate, sometimes romantic and spiritual art, they often worked with found objects fashioned into collages and unusual, even bizarre materials.

Preeminent in this artistic time was Jess Collins (1923-2004) who began using the single name JESS after leaving his career as a radiochemist for the atomic bomb (yikes), entering art school here and moving in with his lover, the poet Robert Duncan (1919-1988).  Theirs was a long and openly gay union in decidely unopen times, and Jess's art often advocated for sexual freedom as well as freedom to express the mythical, whimsical and absurb.

This was the unparalled, innocent, 'summer of love' San Francisco Ciwt moved to, and she particularly enjoyed a quote from Gottardo Piazzoni, one of the other Northern California artists in
the Jess show:  When asked what religion he observed, Piazzoni said "I think its California."

Catching Up after the Blackout --- Days 8/188,189,190, 191

Walks:  1. Wait for Comcast  2. Wait for Comcast, Begin NYC Prep  3. Hood, Out of Comcast Jail,                  Begin Packing, and Cat Nails Day 🙀
Distance: 1. Yoga   2. Yoga   3. 3 Miles, Small Yoga

The mini blackout that struck Ciwt's building (undelated to the recent Big Blackout throughout California) has passed.  To catch loyal CIWT readers up, here are some recent things she wants to tell you about.

James Tissot at the Legion of Honor Museum

Before going to the Press Preview of  James Tissot (1836-1902): Fashion and Faith Ciwt was fearing her eyes would glaze over from boredom.  But she found Tissot's mid-19th C. paintings of London and Paris haute society and Bible scenes (yes) to be more alive in person than in photographs. Up close his colorful, crisp, precise  observations of manners and fashion simmer with urbanity and undercurrents of sexual drama. And they certainly have found their perfect venue in the Beaux Arts Legion of Honor buiding, which is a scale model of the Palais de la Legion d'Honneur in Paris.

Evening  or The Ball, 1878, oil on canvas  (Musee d'Orsey)

Ciwt was particularly struck by this double portrait of a gown and a lady.  She loves how Tissot not only captured the details of the fabric and frills but carried the warm, rich golden yellow throughout the canvas making it positively glow.  And she also loves the delicate full profile portrait of Kathleen Newton, Tissot's Irish muse, love and love of his life. Who might she be looking across at while on the arm of a considerably older gentleman?

What Our Saviour Saw from the Cross, ca. 1886-1894,
Opaque watercolour over graphite on green-grey wove paper
(Brooklyn Museum, purchased by public subscription)

Sadly, Newton died of consumption at age 28, and that devastating event as well as a vision he experienced at the Churcho Saint Sulpice set Tissot on a vastly different, spiritual/religious path.
Attending seances, perhaps in hopes of reconnecting with his lost love, Tissot abandoned his former subjects, steeped himself in the New Testament, and made expeditions to the Middle East to record its land, architecture, costumes and customs.  All this and more in service of his ambitious project of illustrating the New Testament with historical and archaelogical exactitude.

Even on this path during which he painted over 350 watercolors, Tissot's eye for social interaction and drama was on full display.  Ciwt found his What Our Saviour Saw from the Cross to be shockingly original and can only image how the scene was first received by viewers when first presented in Paris in 1894 from where they traveled to exhibition crowds in London and the United States.  So moved were the readers of the Brooklyn Daily Eagle that they contributed hard won money to the Brooklyn Museum's campaign to acquire a full set of 350 watercolors of The Life of Christ.  And it is said it was to these that Lucas and Spielberg turned for visual details and inspiration in the making of the Indiana Jones movies.

So, no glazed eyes after all.  When you really look at Tissot's work, there is much to see.

Friday, October 11, 2019

Three Days in October —- Day 8/187

Walk;  SFMOMA (Jess), Vogue Theater (Downton Abbey)
Distance: 3 miles, small yoga

Comcast is 3 days overdue, but hopefully tomorrow Ciwt and CIWT will be back in the internet and phone business.

Thursday, October 10, 2019

CIWT on iPhone - hopefully —- Days 182-6

Walk: Legion of Honor (James Tissot Press Preview). PGCC
Distance: 1 Hour Pickle, 3.5 Miles, general yoga stretching

So Ciwt returned home from the Tissot Press Preview today to find both her landline (remember those?) and computer out of commission.  Among other things that means she will have to count on her iPhone for her CIWT entries.  And first she’ll need to learn how to do that.  Please hang in, there’s more to call me like her thoughts on Tissot, her upcoming trip to New York, her cats, her pickleball scores, and much more.

Sunday, October 6, 2019

Gentle, Pleasing Pain --- Days 8/180 and 181

Walks: Hood, Look at a Few Real Estate Listings, Cinema Club (Pain and Glory)
Distance: 1.5 miles, 3 miles, small yoga, no pickle/addiction subsiding

        Antonio Banderas in Pain and Glory

Pedro Almodovar's Pain and Glory is the most pleasantly watchable movie Ciwt remembers seeing.  A continual visual delight no matter what is happening on the screen.  And what is happening there is Antonio Banderas's best cinema acting job ever. (She hasn't seen him on stage).  Ciwt says Go, Enjoy.  .

Friday, October 4, 2019

Grace Under Insanity --- Day 8/179

Walk: AMC Kabuki (Joker)
Distance: 2 miles, yoga

So, unless you are desperate for a movie and/or needing to protect your aching back from another pickleball game, Ciwt can't think of a reason to recommend Joker.  Joaquin Phoenix's acting is superior, as you probably already know.  So, if you do go, you'll be mesmerized by that and have some thoughts about whether or not he deserves the Academy Award which he'll surely be nominated for.  But the Joker 'plot' is so thin, disjointed and going nowhere that Phonenix doesn't really have a character to develop.  Instead he electrifies scene after scene after scene with amazingly and original, and gracefully creepy performances.  Come to think of it, maybe you need to go just to watch him.

Thursday, October 3, 2019

Return of the Omm --- Day 8/178

Walk: PGCC
Distance: Just a group exercise class and a yoga stretch

So there was Ciwt just a few years ago limber as a teenager (maybe) from years and years of daily yoga and walks.  Picture her today sitting down in stiff stages, getting up with crunching sounds from her knees, feeling random pinches and pains from a few months of pickleball and weights training.  Lesson for Citw: Get back to Yoga.  (Maybe you too?)

Wednesday, October 2, 2019

Sunday in the Park with Neighbors --- Day 8/177

Walk: Pickleball, Hood
Distance: 2 hours Pickle, 3 miles

Fall Festival in the Park
So Ciwt loves her local park so much she accepted an invitation a few years ago to join the Board that kind of looks out for it. A few months ago it was decided that we would give a neighborhood Fall Festival with balloon animals, face painting, apple bobbing, cookies, cider, the whole Fall works. Several men on the board supported the concept then ran for cover ("I didn't join the board to man information booths....").  Ciwt didn't do that - and in fact manned the information both.  But secretly she was thinking, oh dear, it will be a bust.

No!  Everybody came! And everybody - parents, kids, dogs, even Ciwt - had a blast and loves their park even more.  So nice to be wrong!

Tuesday, October 1, 2019

New Models are In. Maybe You Didn't Notice. --- Days 8/174, 175, 176

Walks:  Pickleball, Hood, PGCC
Distances: 2 hours Pickle, 3 miles, stretch/class/private

Ciwt's New Car (She Wishes)

Ciwt tries to avoid the "I remember when...Good old days..." patter. But, really, the new Fall car excitement is not the same as her era when a new model might suddenly transform from square to sleek and have fins and/or a fancy grill.  And, oh, the colors.  (Sob) Now the changes are subtle to say the least - and often in areas like technology (read computers) which Ciwt can't understand muchless notice.  But, the other day when she took her car in for its latest (computer) recall, she noticed her next car.  Or the one she might have saved up for in about 10 years, price being the Noticiable change from Ciwt's good old days (oops).  Cute car though with all sorts of bells and whistles - and probably a Huge computer.