I’m mixing my metaphors again. Y’all know how that goes.
I’ve been reading Bella Tuscany again; I actually finished it a couple of days ago. I don’t know why I needed to read this again, but in retrospect, it probably has to do with the way that Frances Mayes talks about the way art is alive and part of the everyday in Italy: all the local chapels have magnificent icons of Mary and works by Renaissance Masters.
It got me in the mood to create the PowerPoint for Gnome’s Humanities classes and talk about how the definition of art has changed in such drastic ways and how art has inundated the everyday because there are artists that want their art to be part of everyday experience (like the artist consortium poketo) and artists who create monumental works for the everyday like Dr. Evermor (artists who are referred to as “vernacular artists”). This everyday-ness has become so prevelant that Aestheticians have begun talking about “everyday aesthetics”: the aesthetics of the hotel, the football game, the places and spaces that we live in every day of our lives.
I have these books that I always return to, that speak certain things to me, that change each time that I read them because, each time I read them, I’m a different person. They’re battered and torn not because of abuse but because they have been loved shabby like a favorite woobie blanket or a ridiculously ugly acid-green sweater that was bestowed when a dear friend grew too talk for it and given with love because she knew that I would never grow too tall for it and would always love that it was ridiculously ugly ’cause that’s the way I am.
It explains why I have so very many books: I need them close and physical and accessible. It’s a physical pain when I desperately need to read something that’s been put away into storage because we don’t have enough book shelves yet or because the dear book-friend I long for has been buried behind so many other books that it can’t be found.
A month or two ago, I had a deep longing to read the first five-ish chapters of Owlsight by Mercedes Lackey because of Keisha. There’s something about when she abruptly uproots her life with her family to become the town Healer that seemed like the exact thing to celebrate my first year anniversary in Wisconsin, and when Keisha learns to ground-and-shield for the first time, how she talks about never having dreamed of flying but always having dreamed of being an oak tree. I know how she feels.
I’ve never once dreamed of flying: I dream of falling, of zombie apocalypses, of far-flung battles, and of a violinist I might have been once-upon-a-time in another life.
But not flying.
Okay, on my Kindle counts as accessible too. I kinda carry my Kindle with me everywhere because I keep my favorite fanfics on it, ever at the ready: like A Farm in Iowa. I think I’ve read this fic (which is like 300-400+ pages long) 5 or 6 times since I moved to Wisconsin—because it always reminds me about finding Home in unlikely places and in unlikely people.
Wisconsin was like that for me. Wisconsin is my blue-painted bedroom to lay my head down in when I’m cranky and hate the world or my farm after a long life of cranky and being misunderstood.
I like it here, and I like the people that I’ve met here.
So, yeah. Welcome to the random thinking about books. There’s thinking coming about The Parasol Protectorate also, but right now, I think that *waves hand* all of the above book-thinking is probably enough.
And, a bit revealing.
In a completely unrelated (at least, obviously related) event, I’ve been asked to join a group show at the end of April: Circus Nerve.
It’s very exciting. I had met the curator at a show at IQ’s (before it closed), so I know her a little (her name’s Natalie). Evidently, she had been at the ARTgarage and saw my studio and work and asked me to join the show.
IT’S VERY EXCITING, ISN’T IT?!?
There will be more about this very exciting event as it unfolds.
Courage and cake!