Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Long Weekend of Richness

Well, it all began with the energetic, hectic culmination of the Community Warehouse annual table & Chair Affair. The turnout was amazing and the usual rainy evening did not keep patrons and artists away. Tonight, I will get some of the numbers which I have been told exceeded our expectations, so I will be happy to report that news soon.

Friday night I saw an incredibly powerful and moving White Bird performance Kidd Pivot performing "Dark Matters". It presented me with many questions, emotions and room for possibilities, and trying to figure out some answers (a life long process I might add). It spoke to me about fate, who is the puppet and who is the puppeteer in our lives, how much can we control, how much choice do we have controlling our destiny, and how much do we just have to surrender to. To add to this emotional piece, was the realization toward the intermission, that I was in the Newmark Theatre. I wondered if the plaque I had ordered to honor my mom and her passing, and to celebrate the wonderful memories of attending the ballet and live theatre in NYC throughout my childhood with her, had been installed on it's seat: H for her last name and 5 for the day she gave birth to me. I went to the other side of the theater butterflies in my stomach, as I reached seat H-5. I was glad that the patrons in the audience, had left the row for a bit, and I gazed down and lightly touched, honored if you will, the plaque that bears her name and loving mother and grandmother on it. The poignant moment was so deep, sweet and painful yet filled me with great joy in the remembering. I was glad I had attended the performance alone, so I could just take this all in without words. I returned to my seat, and felt her presence with me as the dance reached it's crescendo, and knew that had it not been for her, I would never have developed my deep passion for the dance, as an observer and as a dancer. I felt spent by the end of the performance, and as I left the theatre, went to give the plaque a goodbye kiss with my fingertips.

Saturday held more richness, as I shared the Mark Rothko exhibit at the Portland Art Museum with my daughter Jenni. We learned a bit about his life and how it paralleled some of our immigrant relatives. My father having come to the US from Russia, as an infant, around the same time Rothko did, and then his time spent in NYC where my grandparents and parents also lived. I never knew that Rothko then lived a great deal of his life in Portland. We walked together, sharing our reactions to the paintings and our favorites. Jenni's comments left me with lots to think about, and helped me see the paintings through her eyes. It brought back memories of our frequent trips to the National Gallery of Art in DC when we lived there, and how the highlight of her day, when she was little, was the sweet little turkey on croissant lunch she savored in their cafe! It also got us very excited about our plans to see Red, at Center Stage the following day. We also were quite blown away at the unexpected amazing exhibit and films by John Frame, an artist that I had not been familiar with. In the dark rooms of the galleries, he created a world of wonder, as if stepping into one of his dreams, or possibly his nightmares. His 3-D diorama like work, spoke to me of some the same thoughts I had watching Dark Matters. The puppet and the puppeteer images, where ever present in his finely crafted other worldliness. After seeing these two exhibits, we were both on visual overload and decided that we had seen enough to satiate us for the day, (not without of course adding to my obsessive art book collection- I couldn't leave without taking a bit of John Frame home with me!)

Sunday completed the richness of the weekend with the amazingly powerful play Red. We also stayed after the play, for the discussion by a psychologist who attempted to give us a bit of insight into the man behind the paintings, Mark Rothko.

This was followed by an unbelievably wonderful dinner at June, a far cry from the lunch at the National Gallery! I truly feel like my cup runneth over with the richness of art, dance, theatre, family and memories.

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