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As September slides into October, heralding the rapid advance of autumn, here’s a quick round-up of the colours of my Dutch summer…

colours of a dutch summer 2016

being away at peak seedling planting time meant no vegetable growing adventures for me this year, but my mini rock garden, and the allium bulbs I planted in the autumn last year, put on a very good show!

colours of a dutch summer 2016

august mid-morning moon  |  laser 3.14‘s perceptive brand of street poetry

colours of a dutch summer 2016

gira loves this beautiful blue shweshwe duvet cover (made by my super-talented mum)… i suspect it might be because he knows how good he looks on it :)

colours of a dutch summer 2016

soft pink early morning views from the studio

colours of a dutch summer 2016

leiden is rocking the pink too!

coloursofadutchsummer06

lotus @ hortus botanicus, leiden

colours of a dutch summer 2016

gingko  |  venation

~ and you don’t get greens like those above, without a bit of the below ~

colours of a dutch summer 2016

lush

colours of a dutch summer 2016

flying things
street art in leiden  |  stained glass window designed by willem bogtman, haarlem, 1920’s (as seen at the ‘living in the amsterdam school: designs for the interior 1910-1930‘ exhibition at amsterdam’s stedelijk museum)

colours of a dutch summer 2016

everyone loves the sun(flower)

colours of a dutch summer 2016

rainbow cherry toms, ready for slow-roasting

colours of a dutch summer 2016

blue-eyed visitor at my studio window  |  radiant brickwork, amsterdam

colours of a dutch summer 2016

brick gables, haarlem  |  beautiful berries (buds? anyone know what this fascinating plant is?)

colours of a dutch summer 2016

to the beach!
kite-flying  |  fallow deer grazing on the verdant dune grasses at zandvoort

colours of a dutch summer 2016

grey is a colour too

colours of a dutch summer 2016

au revoir summer!

During our various city wanderings this past summer we encountered lots of fine, furry felines. In celebration of today’s autumnal equinox, or vernal equinox if you’re reading this in the southern hemisphere, (and because there simply aren’t enough pictures of cats on the internet ;-) here’s a glimpse of how Holland’s urban kitties while away their lazy summer days…

the cat days of summer

listening to the symphony in his head
[haarlem]

the cat days of summer

ziggy stardust *
[haarlem]

the cat days of summer

21st century broomstick
[haarlem]

the cat days of summer

heatwave face
[gira @ home, haarlem]

the cat days of summer

puny humans!
[leiden]

the cat days of summer

lunch leftovers?
[leiden]

the cat days of summer

aahhh, that’s the spot…
… wait, where are you going? I have so much more to give!
[haarlem]

the cat days of summer

yellow eyed yogi
[haarlem]

the cat days of summer

hangin’ out on his hog
[haarlem]

the cat days of summer

siamese twins
[leiden]

the cat days of summer

just chillin’
[haarlem]

the cat days of summer

ginger repose
[top: leiden, bottom: haarlem]

the cat days of summer

happy equinox, folks!

* although Bowie’s eyes are technically not heterochromic the moniker “Ziggy Stardust” seemed to suit this elegant fella very well

RIP Casey Copperfield
This post is dedicated to the memory of Casey Copperfield,
beautiful kitty of blog friend Carol

masks, northwest coast first nations @ museum volkenkunde, leiden

“Bella Coola Indians wearing ceremonial blankets and ‘Crooked Beak of Heaven’ masks”, c.1886, City of Vancouver Archive

I haven’t had much free time to spend on this blogging lark recently… hence my even-more-sporadic-than-normal posting schedule (so thanks to all you fine folk who continue to pop in and say hi despite the almost tangible odour of decay wafting about the place!).

One of my main motivations for maintaining this blog is to have a repository of images of things I’ve encountered out there in the big, wide world and found interesting, inspirational or meaningful in some or other way, a repository that I can (cross-)reference when an injection of inspiration is needed (and which I hope can be a source of inspiration to others). And so, despite the lack of free time, I definitely wanted to make sure I added these masks to the ‘collection’ for future reference! Magnificently crafted and utterly compelling, they’re from an exhibition entitled “The Story of the Totem Pole” currently on (ends 1 April 2013) at the Museum Volkenkunde (which we luckily chanced upon when we were in Leiden in early Feb for the “Spoken en Geesten” exhibit at SieboldHuis).

mask, northwest coast first nations @ museum volkenkunde, leiden

Wolf Mask, Richard Hunt, Kwakwaka’wakw (Kwakiutl), c.1970-1980
[wood, paint]

mask, northwest coast first nations @ museum volkenkunde, leiden

Mask, Haida, late 19th century
[wood, paint]

mask, northwest coast first nations @ museum volkenkunde, leiden

Dogfish Mask, Robert Davidson, Haida, 1981
[wood, paint, operculum & abalone shell, mixed media]

mask, northwest coast first nations @ museum volkenkunde, leiden

Life and Death, Perry LaFortune, Coast Salish, 1986
[wood, paint]

mask, northwest coast first nations @ museum volkenkunde, leiden

Bukwus Mask, Joe David, Nuu-cha-nulth (Nootka), 1981
[wood, paint, horse hair, mixed media]

mask, northwest coast first nations @ museum volkenkunde, leiden

Hawk Man Mask, Freda Diesing, Haida, 1975
[wood, paint, abalone shell, cedar bark, mixed media]

mask, northwest coast first nations @ museum volkenkunde, leiden

Bukwus Mask (Wild Man), Calvin Hunt, Kwakwaka’wakw (Kwakiutl), c.1970-1980 [wood, fur, paint, horse hair, mixed media]

mask, northwest coast first nations @ museum volkenkunde, leiden

Wolf mask, Richard Hunt, Kwakwaka’wakw (Kwakiutl), c.1970-1980
[wood, paint]

Leiden

spooky light over Leiden
(moments before a brief but furious hailstorm)

Last weekend we made the short train trip from Amsterdam to Leiden to see the ‘Spoken en Geesten’ (‘Ghosts and Spirits’) exhibition currently on at SieboldHuis. The works on display have been drawn from the Tikotin Museum of Japanese Art in Haifa, Israel.

I love the fluid linework, dense patterning and subtly vibrant colouring of 18th and 19th century Japanese woodblock prints and am always intrigued by how ‘modern’ they appear to be… so fresh, they could have been made yesterday! Here are a few striking details from some of the works on display (I took the photos at a slight angle to minimise reflections on the pictures’ glass – apologies for some resultant distortion).

from 'Ghosts and Spirits" exhibition @ SieboldHuis, Leiden

“The ghost of Asakura Tōgo”, Utagawa Kuniyoshi,
woodblock colour print, 1851

from 'Ghosts and Spirits" exhibition @ SieboldHuis, Leiden

“Ibaraki, the Female Demon”, Shibata Zeshin,
woodblock colour print, second half of 19th century

from 'Ghosts and Spirits" exhibition @ SieboldHuis, Leiden

“The Night Procession of One Hundred Demons”, attributed to Utagawa Kuniyoshi, colour and ink on paper, first half of 19th century (?)

from 'Ghosts and Spirits" exhibition @ SieboldHuis, Leiden

“The ghost of Asakura Tōgo”, Utagawa Kuniyoshi,
woodblock colour print, middle panel (?) of a triptych, 1851

from 'Ghosts and Spirits" exhibition @ SieboldHuis, Leiden

“The ghost of Asakura Tōgo”, Utagawa Kuniyoshi,
woodblock colour print, right panel (?) of a triptych, 1851

from 'Ghosts and Spirits" exhibition @ SieboldHuis, Leiden

“A Female Spirit on the Roof”, attributed to Utagawa Kuniyoshi,
colour and ink on paper, first half of 19th century (?)

from 'Ghosts and Spirits" exhibition @ SieboldHuis, Leiden

“Nissaka, The Rock That Weeps at Night”, from the series “53 Pairings Along the Tōkaidō Road”, Utagawa Kuniyoshi, woodblock colour print, c.1845

from 'Ghosts and Spirits" exhibition @ SieboldHuis, Leiden

“Fox Dressed as a Nun”, Katabori netsuke, ivory, 19th century (not a great photo unfortunately, but possibly one of the loveliest netsuke I’ve ever seen!)

SieboldHuis basement, Leiden

an encounter in the museum’s ‘haunted’ cellar

Of course we felt compelled to re-watch Hayao Miyazaki‘s brilliant film ‘Spirited Away‘ when we returned home that evening… and a wild and wonderful journey it was too!

The exhibition is on at SieboldHuis in Leiden until 17 February 2013 – well worth a visit.

some of my work, available on etsy
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This magic has just started to unfold in the ‘garden’ on our little roof terrace. Methinks spring has most definitely sprung! #spring #lente #blossoms #plum (?) #pink #petals #stamens #delicate #growth #seasons #cycle_of_life #roof_garden #haarlem Dawn colours #dawn #silhouette #dome #cathedral #kathedralebasilieksintbavo #studio_view #rooftops #haarlem Dressing W-A-Y out of my comfort zone for the “glitter and glamour” themed wedding party of friends tonight. Gulp… they say it’s good to step outside one’s comfort zone now and then, right?! #shimmery #sequins #glitter #festive #ottodame #not_black #colour #pattern #texture This is Henk... just one of the many good reasons to go and get your hair cut @jill_and_sisi (Admiraal de Ruijterweg 221, Amsterdam) #henk #puppy #dog #super_soft #super_cute #jill_and_sisi #pattern #sunshine Full moon rises over the silver hills… (or, much more prosaically, simply a sleeping cat and the negative shapes left behind on a spray painting ‘drop cloth’ :) #magic_in_the_mundane #cat #fur #silver #grey #black #monochromatic #pattern #shape #spraypaint The bike lane… #symbol #icon #infographic #design #bicycle #emblematic #netherlands #bicycle_culture #cycling_infrastructure #ride_on

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