Wild Times!

we’re sitting on the 9th floor, downtown Markham, Ontario, wiggling our toes after yesterday’s big Pride Parade walk.  Jazz and I managed to get in with the gang and make that march.  great day for a parade and WOW what a turn out!  that parade route was lined ten rows deep.

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the adventure started early last week with that awesome party at Kent Monkman’s studio in Toronto, on Tuesday night.  now that was a great show and a fun party.  i got home Wednesday morning to find my trusty Ovation, 1994, sitting there waiting…  a reminder that my old rock and roll band:  No Reservations, is about to re boot for a few shows at the Northern Lights Festival in Sudbury, July 6-9th.

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at the National Gallery of Canada:  that’s me and Conservative MP Scott Reid, pondering Tom Thomson’s “The Jack Pine” 1916-17, oil on canvas, and how we’re going to get it out of there and into the cottage, hanging over the fireplace…

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Norval Morrisseau, Artist and Shaman between Two Worlds, 1980, acrylic on canvas, detail.  of course anytime i walk past an authentic Morrisseau painting i have to stop and take a good look!  this beauty is gigantic!

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serious and very nice work!  i wouldn’t mind working on a canvas of that size!  (wouldn’t mind finding one of my paintings in the National Gallery of Canada too!)

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sunrise as seen from the 9th floor, June 25th!  Markham, Ontario.

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“A Portrait of a Father and his Daughter”, my daughter, Jazzy Moon, gearing up for the Toronto Pride Parade at Kent Monkman’s studio, Sunday morning, June 25th.  me: in the Pride Zone with flash modern Anishnabe wear!

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Toronto Pride amusements!  “The Well Heeled Indian” strikes again!  Corner of Bloor and Church, right around noon!

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Jazzy Moon, as one of the Fathers of Confederation, at the starting point, Bloor and Church:  what a rock and roll show!  Thousands of people on hand, ready to have a good time.

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pretty tough not to feel the power and the excitement with so many people on hand!

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Jasmine Moon, marching with the Fathers of Confederation, down Yonge Street, Toronto, June 25th.

whew!  what wild times!  school’s out for summer.  the gals are going back to Ottawa to celebrate Canada at 150 and i’m going back to the range to see what i can do about that lawn!

and what fun adventures are next?!!!

 

What a BLAST!

and so i’m back from the city of Toronto, back in Ottawa, and relaxing here on Island Park Drive, thinking about the grand and glorious scenes from Tuesday night.

i split the capital city at noon on Tuesday, hustled down to the Bloor and Dundas area of Toronto and just in the nick of time!  the party:  a preview of new work by famed Canadian artist Kent Monkman, at his studio, was set to go at 6 p.m.  i arrived on a side street at 5:50!

i walked my way over to the studio with butterflies and some nervousness:  it isn’t every day a fella like me gets to see a famous Canadian artist’s studio space!  we’re talking the magic factory.  this is where the almighty lands right here on earth.  i had been using my imagination for several weeks but here was the real deal, just five minutes away and me with a ticket to get in.

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that’s the artist, sporting the green t and brown shoes.  there are 3 new works in the shot: mind expanding!  and big!  but check out the piece behind the 3 new pieces: the massive one, a work in progress, up against the wall…

we’re talking the big leagues: someone who is going, not only into the Canadian Art History books, but the World Art History books.

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i absolutely had to see these:  the paint and the brushes!

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some of the models:  a lively bunch of youngsters creating scenes and having a lot of fun with it.  that young lady in the middle, she’s in two of his new pieces!  i didn’t get a chance to talk with the others.

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on the couch with one of the models: what a great living room set up that would be for us out there on the open range, back on “the island”.  or i’d like to write a one act play for Debajehmujig and insist that this is the set!

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there is the man himself:  a gentleman in the old fashioned definition.  he put that hundred million dollar right arm of his around me and let me tell you that meant something to me!

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The Well Heeled Indian!  (ha ha!)  well you’re going out or you’re not.  and the way i see it, anything worth doing in the fashion department is worth over doing!  plus i have to admit: i enjoyed the attention from all of those glamorous ladies at the party!

after the party i hit the diner with an old art school friend, a fun little diner way out there on the far ends of Bloor:  just the two of us in the diner at 10 p.m.  fun stuff.  then it was time to get down to business and make that drive back to Ottawa!

i arrived at Island Park at 6 a.m. but not before seeing the moon rise, the sun rise, and the mighty greens along highway 401.  what a ride.  and what a day!

Okay So Lets Go Do This!

i’m on the road in a few short minutes to meet famed Canadian artist:  Kent Monkman.  if you don’t know who he is:  “Baby Google My Name” (Words and music by Mark Seabrook, Copyright 2016)

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that’s yours truly digging a Kent Monkman painting at the National Gallery of Canada, last November.

wish me some good luck!

Back in Baby’s arms

whew!!!  i made it home.  yes.  i did come in during the night and i did come in on my hands and knees.  but as my dad would say:  you’re here now.

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i have been away.  my paradise on earth is here, waiting for me!  and i have been here now, this is day 3, going sky clad, lemon water and bird song:

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she is a paradise on this good earth and i am here upon it.

let me ask you this:  the lawn…  it has gotten away from me.  but what do you think?  let it go wild this summer or cut it down?

when i arrived on the range, CBC radio had some weird music playing and one of them was:  He Aint Heavy, He’s My Brother”

i’ve got 3 dead and 2 missing.  so how come i am still here?

 

Victory!

Peter Purdy’s solo show at the Rooster on Bank Street, downtown Ottawa, closed yesterday and you can bet i was on my way at noon to pick up my purchase!  it was kind of fun being on the other end of the business:  usually i’m the artist but in this case i was the esteemed collector, wearing gloves, handling with care.  the painting came down off the wall, the Rooster folks had it covered nicely, and the painting went out the door, never to be seen in public again.  well maybe, down the road somewhere, if we ever get the twinravens art gallery opened, back home on “the island”.

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there she is:  untitled, acrylic on canvas, 36×48 inches, twinravens permanent collection.

yes indeed:  sweet victory.  i’m very happy to have it.  and i will enjoy looking at her.

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unknown artist, artwork on the side of the Dollarama Store, Somerset Street, Ottawa.

there is genius artwork darn near everywhere you look in this town.  i saw this work yesterday afternoon on my way to the Rooster and had to stop for a closer look.

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beautiful.  i have no idea who, or where, but one thing is for certain:  i would love to see some work on canvas from this unknown artist.  imagine walking into a gallery and seeing 25 pieces, 36×48, portrait format, in super colour, created by this artist…

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yes!  i’d line up to see that!  i was in a line up to get in and see the Kent Monkman show at the University of Toronto Gallery back in January but other than that, i’ve been able to waltz right in there, no problems.

well like i said before:  there is artwork everywhere!  live theatre/drama too, on the street corners, in the bars, down on Rideau outside the mall…

special services

was called up for some special services this past week and being an Anishnabe from way back, i had to go.  but when i got there, the scenes were rattling:

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Notre Dame Cemetery, Ottawa, May 4th.  drove by here many times or saw it out the No. 2 bus windows but never once set foot in the place, up until yesterday.

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we arrived early so i had a chance to walk the grounds and read a few, like this one.  i stopped and wondered, what happened to Johnny Boy way back in November, 1888, when he was a spritely 25…  one thing is for darn sure: you can bet tomorrow’s Kentucky Derby that Jack never reached one iota of what he was capable of, while he was on this earth.  got me to thinking about how i conduct my own indian affairs.

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yes indeed it got me to thinking, about a great many things.  i thought about my long gone indian brothers.  a nephew.  grandparents who i never really got to know and never knew where their final resting place is.  missed the whole deal with them: that’s the Sixties Scoop.

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all these heavy duty thoughts were swirling around but i settled myself down when i thought about my dad, Jack i mean, not my indian dad, when he said:  everybody’s gotta go sometime, Red.  he said that to me way back, i think it was in the winter of 85.

i started getting the spooks, walking around in there,  and wished i’d brought my cigarettes.  a little tobacco smoke would have done me well in there but i went on with what i had: i brought up one of the twinravens prayers and imagined Allegri’s Miserere mei, Deus, for a musical backdrop, to calm things.  pretty soon one of the boys came along:

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here is a good reading of Miserere:

and so that was said and done.  never met the lady myself but i fully and completely understand how tough its going to be for some folks come later today and the next few.

6 days on the road

of course as soon as i write that i hear Dave Dudley singing the old trucker classic, playing on those 8 track tapes back in the 70’s…

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so we got through Day 2 at the conference, with a great many things to ponder, me especially.  i got to looking at that slide and wondered what the definition of “more repetitive” is.  we’re talking Type 2 yes, but is it a month?  a season?  a year?  what about 6 years stacked on top of each other?  we’ll have to take that up with accounting.

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Sunrise on Sunday, April 30th, Highway 7 and McCowan as seen from the 9th.

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a few of the titles we purchased at the conference: no light reading by any stretch!  there wasn’t any time for reading on Sunday as we had to blaze up to Ottawa and handle some serious affairs.

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remember Michelle:  never ever ever tell anyone about this…  (too many serious days can  really make a difference when the light duty is supposed to start!)

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Sunrise on Tuesday, May 2nd, 7 and McCowan as seen from the 9th.

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unfortunately for me I got away from my Jazzy Moon!  a father can’t spend too much time away from his daughter.  at least not this father!

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she’s growing up.  the dreaded empty nest is looming up large for this old man.  for those of you in the know, if you have any advice on how to deal with this mega transition, leave me a comment!  otherwise if left on my own all i can visualize is me in this Winslow Homer masterpiece:

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“The Gulf Stream”, Winslow Homer, 1899, oil on canvas, 28×49 inches.  (at the Met?)