Wednesday, October 01, 2014

A Gourmet Poetry Salon: photos and videos

The September Gourmet Poetry Salon at Urban Gallery was a wonderful, warm, congenial and über talented afternoon. Many thanks to Sonia Di Placido and Heather Babcock, who featured, Angel Torres, who had two photo paintings in the show The Art of Food, and who had a cameo spot, and our open mics, Stemond Pardy, Philip Cairns, Norman Allan, Heather Cadsby and Margaret Code. I also did an open mic spot sharing some prose poems on the theme of food.


                         

Some of these photos are video snapshots and some are from my cell - not enough daylight for good photos... but a memento of a lovely afternoon.

A few of the videos (not everyone wanted theirs public, and the camera battery ran out of juice before the last two open mics, Heather and Norman, who said they didn't want video anyway).



Simply a brilliant poet, a beautiful, warm, kind and friendly woman, and an amazingly captivating reading, Sonia Elisabetta Di Placido featured at A Gourmet Poetry Salon and yes, food! Zuppolone, wine... Her stories and introductions to each of her poems are really interesting. She connects with the audience by sharing explanations, anecdotes, laughter and charm.

1:40 -Zuppolone - Italian Canadians at Table
6:06 -Wine Tasting, after Gertrude Stein's, 'Tender Buttons.' In WWR38
9:33 -Zuppolone - Exaltation in Cadmium Red
11:35 -Doe - WWR38 (Ryerson Journal)
12:16 -Camaraderie - WWR38
13:39 -This Bus Rides North - WWR38
14:39 -American Cliche - WWR38
16:09 -Cadmium Red - Exaltation in Cadmium Red
18:13 -Imaginings -Exaltation in Cadmium Red"



Angel Torres had a Cameo Spot.
An article I wrote on his Geishas in The Art of Food.



Brenda Clews on open mic.


Margaret Code on open mic.

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 brendaclews.com

#1 Ink Drawing


Ink Drawing. October 1, 2014. ©Brenda Clews, 11.5" x 16.5", India ink, Moleskine sketchbook.

This is a large Moleskine sketchbook and the drawings are hard to photograph. While shooting in direct sun helps, they still requires finicky colour correction. I may post ones taken in cloudy foggy days like today, or with fluorescent daylight bulbs, and then re-take them and slip them into the same spots when there is sun and time to colour correct the images.

#inktober
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 brendaclews.com

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

My beloved doggy passed away some weeks ago...

What it is, why I haven't blogged in so long, is that my doggy, Keesha, passed away. On September 12th. I planned to do a memorial post on her but am seriously too grief-stricken to manage it. I had no idea that 15 intense dog years, including nursing her for about 11 months, could leave me so bereft. I've stopped howling in the morning when I get up because she is not there to take out, crying when I am having a roast beef sandwich because she isn't begging for some too. Sleep is returning sporadically. It is insane how much I miss her. I try to remember to fill her water bowl every day - for my little cat, Aria, who misses her doggy, I know it. I am trying to do 'our walk' when I haven't walked anywhere else and walking those streets, those blocks with all the memories I have remains hugely painful. Who'd think the love between a human and an animal could be so strong, or so difficult when death comes.

This is the last drawing I did of her... hours before she passed peacefully away in my arms.

This is the drawing I speak to often... yes, it's somewhat distorted, not 'anatomically correct' yet, for me, it is her. When I put my chin on that nose, and look into the eyes, she is there.

Canada Day, July 1, 2014 - she had had such a terribly difficult night the night before that family had gathered to say good-bye... but the next day, here, July 1st, she was almost like her young self again, happy, energetic, playful, for at least that quarter of an hour in the park... she lived another 2 1/2 months because of love, because of love, I am sure.

My shrine of drawings of her last days. That is my son, drawn the night she died.


Her 15th birthday on August 25th

Keesha's birthday cookies being inspected by her kitty, Aria


This photo is still my iPhone wallpaper.


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 brendaclews.com

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

'A Gourmet Poetry Salon' Sep 27th 3-5pm at Urban Gallery!




A Gourmet Poetry Salon at Urban Gallery hosted by moi. Featuring Sonia Di Placido and Heather Babcock, with a cameo spot by Angel Torres. Open Mic sign-up at 3pm. Delectable, delicious, convivial and warm and welcoming.

Saturday, Sep 27, 2014
from 3-5pm
400 Queen St East, Toronto
www.urbangallery.ca

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 brendaclews.com

Thursday, September 11, 2014

A Gourmet Poetry Salon this month @ Urban Gallery - prepping for aposter!

This month we have a Gourmet Poetry Salon at Urban Gallery in honour of the 30 year anniversary of Urban Catering. We have some delectable offerings. The beautiful and über talented Heather Babcock and the sumptious poet, Sonia Di Placido are featured and a cameo by the graphic artist and writer Angel Torres, who has two photograph paintings in the show (that's his work in a photo of moi at the Opening Reception). There will be eight or so 5 min open mic spots too - sign-up at 3pm. Urban Gallery, Saturday afternoon, Sep 27th, from 3-5pm. 400 Queen St E. It will be a wonderful afternoon! Everyone is invited!


Beautiful and über talented Heather Babcock.


Me posing in front of Angel Torres photograph painting at the Opening Reception of the Art of Food group show at Urban Gallery Sep 2014. (Photo taken by Angel - great angle huh.)
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 brendaclews.com

Among the Features at 100,000 Poets for Change evening of September 27th



Saturday, September 27, from 7:00pm - 11:00pm

Black Swan Tavern
154 Danforth Ave, Toronto, Ontario M4K1N1

Featuring Robert Priest, Bruce Meyer, Anna Yin, Jeannine Pitas, Max Layton, Luciano Iacobelli, Brenda Clews, Nik Beat, Niki Koulouris, Dane Swan, Bänoo Zan and Pat Connors (who's hosting the event).



Brenda Clews is an African-Canadian poet, painter and video poet. Brenda has had solo art shows and been in a number of group art shows. Her artwork has appeared in books and as journal covers. Her poetry has been published in print and on-line journals over the years. She has been a featured poet at a number of venues and hosts and organizes monthly Poetry Salons at Urban Gallery in Toronto. LyricalMyrical published her chapbook, 'the luminist poems' in 2013. She has a poetry book forthcoming with Guernica Editions. She cites her early years spent barefoot, living in a compound of mud huts, with many wild animals and the wonderful Ndembu people, in the jungle of Kafue National Park in Zambia, for her deep resonance with the beauty, strangeness and brilliance of the tribal mind and the natural world.
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 brendaclews.com

Monday, September 08, 2014

Sunday Life-Drawing at Bampot Bohemian Teahouse

Yesterday's life-drawing session at Bampot Bohemian Teahouse. We put the model on a table against a wall in the centre of the small room and perhaps I was a bit too close because I never felt I got a handle on drawing him. The brightly coloured one was the last pose of 45 min and yes, while I added those colours to the drawing during the session, I worked a bit more on the colour in my studio this morning. I think it is quite lurid. It is perhaps almost too much, un-viewable. I wrote the writing in it during the night last night (and in part refers obliquely to my conversation at break with the model who is a filmmaker about to begin production of his first film):

"A new country with new rules. Green figures hallucinate underwater, their mustard bodies. The Noir look, shadows and slats, but not the story. The story is interlaced in twelve sections, nestled within each other. When I open one sheaf, eleven others slide out. Crimson moon, stars of fog. Rain at midnight. Hunting for love in the orange harvest, disappearing into black, the lit cigarette, amber ashes. Blueberry brandy, the moon, streams of dream waters, gloss. You are impregnated with your shadow."









link to life-drawing album
Life Drawing
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 brendaclews.com

Wednesday, September 03, 2014

Sunday Life-Drawing at Bampot Bohemian Tea House in Toronto

Last Sunday afternoon's life drawing at Bampot Bohemian Tea House. I tried some black InkTense blocks with a water brush but didn't like the effect – it went on a bit too thick and I wasn't able to modulate areas of accentuation the way I can with water-soluble graphite. I also used an ink and water mixture in a brush and it did not work that well. Towards the end I returned to using my ArtGraf and the InkTense ink in little bits and that seemed to work. Overall, fighting a cold bug, I didn't feel up to going that afternoon but went anyway and wonder if that has an effect on drawing itself. The last time I went to a life drawing session when I really was too tired the drawings were so bad I threw every single one out.

I did finish the second one, the one in shadows in my studio - it was the model's favourite of mine and it is also my favourite (hence the large size) - and because the third one was too wet and I had to dry it for transport home, I re-added the ink later too (I like that one too). Otherwise, these are untouched. In a few of them, I did return to using the ArtGraf and used the permanent ink only in places, which worked better.









Whole Album:
Life Drawing
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 brendaclews.com