December 1st, 2008

Printperson divina

William Kentridge projects in Venice

William Kentridge, one of the most important and acclaimed artists working today, was in Venice recently to present several projects. These included a video projection commissioned for the fire curtain of La Fenice opera house; an opera production he designed, Claudio Monteverdi's Il Ritorno di Ulisse (with drawn video projections, huge puppets, and a splendid ensemble of singers and musicians) ; an exhibition at Palazzetto Tito (Fondazione Bevilacqua La Masa) of sculpture, video, drawing, and an artist's book; and last but not least, a series of coffee and tea cups that he designed for Illy Caffe'. Not only do I admire his work very much (I love his drawn films), but several years ago, I had a wonderful opportunity to get to know Kentridge over a period of days at the time of his print retrospective at Grinnell College. So it was of personal interest for me to see him again, and to finally see a full presention of one of his theatrical works.

On Friday, we attended the press conference at La Fenice, with an advance showing of the video. I drew here (disappointed to have left my regular drawing pen at home) with ballpoint. the drawing is hasty, but includes the artist and others seated on stage. The random lines on the curtain try to capture the changing image. We went on to the exhibition, and attended the opera that night at the Teatro Malibran.

I went back to La Fenice yesterday afternoon for the public presentation of the fire curtain video, because I wanted draw there again, and really take it in.

Finally, did I mention that we bought a set of the espresso cups Kentridge had designed for Illy? The cups are mirrored, the plates have anamorphic drawings, so the reflection on the cup resolves the image. We used them for our late Thanksgiving dinner, and they were a great hit.

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Printperson divina

2nd anniversary

I believe that today is the 2nd anniversary of Printperson's Journal. My intention back in 2006 was to force myself to post a drawing every day, or at least to draw every day. I was inspired by owlfish, who had started her LJ as way to force herself to write every day.

We had 156 cm of acqua alta this morning. The entire city is flooded. Theoretically, our palazzo entrance stays dry until 140 cm above sea level, but the water was way higher than that. The ground floor of our palazzo is flooded, and there is water (at least 10 cm)in all three apartments on the ground level. The garden is flooded. Our sandolo is flooded, just barely afloat. I took a walk to the campo in my waders to see how the neighborhood is coping. Now, the tide is going out. A neighbor said she heard that this was the most water in 20 years. Everyone currently living here was helping to bale out water.

This was a scene in our neighborhood this morning.

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