Let’s Get Together

Boudha Stupa, Kathmandu, Nepal

As I walked through Boudhanath, Kathmandu, one evening in September of 2013, under a light rain, I was enveloped in the crowd. Everyone was headed in the same direction, toward the Great Stupa. I was reminded of Barcelona, where I had been the week before. But here, instead of heading to the plaza to sip wine and share food with family and friends, we were headed to a sacred place to walk in brisk clockwise circles murmuring prayers.. or chatting with family and friends. I love both customs and the way they bring people together in a shared space at the same time.


Yo! Picasso!

After Picasso…

Today was all about the Museu Picasso.  The current exhibit of self portraits ( Yo Picasso) ended with a set of haunting images of a very self aware old man that almost brought me to tears.  Somehow I did the whole exhibit in reverse, starting with these final paintings and gradually working back to the confident presentations of self by a gifted teenager.  I think I preferred seeing it this way.  Looking back rather than marching forward…

The other highlight was Picasso’s series of more than forty paintings based (loosely but meaningfully) on Diego Velazquez’ single painting called “Las Meninas.”  Picasso saw more in Velazquez’ work than he could express in a single painting, so he just kept painting what he saw/experienced in a series of variations.  I sketched one of the paintings in order to delve more deeply into it.  The photo above is of the drawing I made after returning to the room and my set of colored pencils.

I think what spoke to me most clearly from Picasso’s life work was the way he kept evolving as an artist, totally unafraid to try new things and to abandon (at least for a while) modes he had already mastered.