Saw my first Christmas cards on sale in August, so now that time of year is certainly getting a grip.
We have pretty much had Harvest, Lammas and the Autumnal Equinox. So, the year is folding in….Samhain in a few weeks.
Likewise, for me, it is a period of retiring, retreat – from the garden to the house, from t-shirts to pullovers, crocks to shoes. This year I am taking a step further and am ‘retreating’ to Argentina and Australia for most of October and November. Not my favourite time of year. And, turbulent this year – with unknown consequences of political events in the US, UK, not to mention the middle east. I find all this has occupied a lot of my thinking space these past weeks.
Otherwise, I did complete and post – on this site – my Brief Introduction to the Practice of Guitar Craft – a completion of sorts will be the upcoming course in Cordoba. I have also been preparing about 12 presentations for lectures in Australia – including one on Creativity, which will be a first for me.
I have enjoyed various exhibitions – and from one extreme to another. The work of the rather enigmatic artist Christopher Wood, who painted alongside Ben Nicholson in the 1930s as the pre-cursors of so-called English modernism. His style is an odd mix of the figurative, abstract/ surreal and naïve. Both Nicholson and Wood apparently discovered the enfantine artist Alfred Wallis who, as an ex-sailor, painted to ‘keep himself company’ – flat and on any odd shaped bit of wood or board. Wood’s family lived in Reddish Hose in Broadchalke, in the graveyard of which he was buried after, apparently suffering from drug-induced paranoia, he threw himself under a train at Salisbury train station. I recommend The Fatal Englishman by Sebastian Faulks:
I also went to a graduate Art exhibition at the University of Chichester. Just four of them. I love their lively, fizzy work, and wonder if any of them will become a name. If they do, I will have wished I had bought their work. One never knows…..
Also an amazing book on Time, which really follows up on my latest enthusiasm, Space and Physics. Something that I find more spiritual than ‘the’ spiritual. Just by being what it is!!
Slightly more down to earth, I went to see The Plough and the Stars by Sean O’Casey – a play about the Easter Rising in Ireland in 1916. It is now a bit dated but still gives a good account of the mixture of seriousness and farce that characterized the uprising. It was its 100th anniversary this year, and many tales and commemorations were held in its honour. Most seem to agree that it went off well, with a correct balance of circumspection and respect for those who in effect were the first to found an Irish Republic – indeed, the foundations of what we have there today. I find myself drawn increasingly into Irish history – more so now not living there.
Lots of new listening, including this:
Elan Sicroff’s 6 CD recordings of the non-Gurdjieff compositions of Thomas de Hartmann. Pretty comprehensive and a good representation, at last, of the scope of his work.
So, preparations continue……