Location, location, location

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It appears that art installations, like real estate, may be all about location, location, location. After the fiasco of vandalized art earlier last week, I intentionally returned to the same site, but a slightly different location. Rather than the quiet north side parkway, I chose a location directly adjacent to the front door of our Aquatic Centre H2O. While my daughter worked out, I installed lights and poetry and stood back all spy like and watched what happened.

Within 15 minutes all 20 copies of my poem and as many tea lights were taken by an interesting variety of people. I overheard joy, gratitude, questions and comments that affirmed what I was doing. The most energetic and positive being a group of tween girls with their enthusiastic YMCA leader who said “Look, this is a random act of kindness (RAK) which lines up completely with what we are doing tonight! Let’s take a poem back and copy it and share it with everyone.” I hadn’t thought of PUP as RAK before. Yes, I was standing fairly close by to hear all this! I also saw people take selfies with the installation. Yep.

The funniest comment was from a boy who was very excited until he saw “They aren’t real candles!!!” Then I returned to my car and received a sticky under my wiper blade. It said “you are special in many ways 🙂 🙂 “ I think it was placed there by those very same happy tween girls! So undeserved, so personal, so WOW.

I want to thank each one of you who spoke kindly and affirmatively when I was feeling hurt about the vandalism. Thank you for your reminders to rally on and not let the darkness win. You know who you are. You are my light.
LA

What’s next…

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What a wonderfully big and complex and exciting world we live in. I know this to be true, but I need reminding on a regular basis. Sometimes I need helicoptered out of my normal life to have my heart jump started.

This weekend did that. A road trip to Vancouver… springtime… sun on cherry blossoms… art installations… White Caps season opener… the pecha kucha… time with my son shopping for grad.… time with my husband on a professional and personal movie going level… time for reading and sharing poetry and coffee and urbanity… time to meet new people… time to recalibrate. All that and the big sigh as we drove over the top of the last rise over Peachland and saw Lake Okanagan spread out below us… HOME. I’m absolutely energized and ready for what’s next.

My deep thanks to the organizers of the BCSLA Conference for their invitation to present in the Pecha Kucha… just wonderful. What an inspiring bunch. 

Akebono cherries 3, in Vancouver BC

Akebono cherries 3, in Vancouver BC (Photo credit: wlcutler)

Poet busking is next. I am going to audition with Kelowna Streets Alive Program this week, and then I will take it to the streets. Not that random spontaneity isn’t fun, but this way appeals in its legitimizing of what I do. I’ll have the choice of 15 sites in the downtown area, any time during 12 hours a day, for as long as the duration of my license. And there is still a random pop up aspect. I’m soooo excited! The only rule… no bagpipes!

And, this weekend on May 5th, another unique poetry opportunity afforded me by the gracious Dorte Meyer at Tribehouse Collective. The Grace Experience at Bo.ttega (one of my favourite venues in Kelowna). It’s a free, family friendly event, a convergence of artists/musicians/creatives/ poets on the topic of grace. What does it mean to each of us… how can we share this overwhelmingly beautiful and somewhat difficult to understand concept in a tangible way, a communal way, an artistic way? I can’t wait to find out. I will be the poet for this event, and have been invited to read several collections of my work. I will also be absorbing all else, and will no doubt come home drained and thankful. GET YOUR FREE TICKETS ASAP!

What a trip life is…

Lesley-Anne, SDG

You pechakucha, I do!

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And if you, like me, have trouble pronouncing this word, here’s some immediate help!

A couple of weeks ago I did not know what PechaKucha was. I’m beginning to understand. And armed with this small and growing knowledge, along with a big dose of creative energy and OK, an even bigger dose of courage, I’m going for it! On April 26th, I’ll be part of a group of 11 PechaKucha presenters at the British Columbia Society of Landscape Architects Annual Conference ~ Depth of Field, in Vancouver, B.C. 

PechaKucha, Japanese for “the sound of conversation”, and according to Wikipedia;

PechaKucha or Pecha Kucha (Japanese: ペチャクチャ, IPA: [petɕa ku͍̥tɕa],[1] chit-chat) is a presentation methodology in which 20 slides are shown for 20 seconds each.

A presentation on any topic, with supporting visual images (in our case all images and no words allowed) for 6 minutes and 40 seconds in total. NO LONGER! Rumor has it the microphone is turned off after your time is up. Yikes!

You would think 20 seconds would go fast. It does not. To look at one image for 20 long seconds allows for a fair amount of gazing, thus rendering some images downright boring after 10 seconds. So, to choose 20 visually engaging images is not easy. Thankfully I have a family of avid photographers with some very uniquely creative eyes. NO SPOILERS HERE!

And, the topic of my presentation… POETRY. Before I worked out the exact timing, I thought I might read 2 poems. Seems I’ll have time for 4! Just like the images, perception and reality are different. And I am finding as I overlay poetry and images how some combinations jar the senses, how some images support the words or don’t. It is an exercise in patience as well as persistence so far. (And thankfulness for a very kind woman at my husbands office who initiated me in the ways of Power Point.)

I’m not certain how it will all turn out, but I’m excited to be creatively challenged and find a new way to offer up my poetry. I’ll let you know how it goes. And for now, here’s a Vancouver PechaKucha on the topic of the future and what open media, open source and open culture might mean for us.

Which occurs to me, is in part what PechaKucha is about… encouraging an open sharing of what we are most passionate about. Hmm… sounds a lot like Pop-Up-Poetry!

All SDG,

Lesley-Anne.