Wednesday, June 5, 2013

opera for a small room @ AGO (art gallery of ontario)

"Lost In the Memory Palace" one of the most intriguing exhibits I've ever seen. A series of rooms containing art installations from Canadian artists Janet Cardiff & George Bures Miller. Within each room a highly detailed imaginary world of light, sound & set which bombards & excites the senses. And in which 'you', the gallery attendee, are an active participant in each room's unique environment, motion sensors operating much of the sound, light & narrative effects. Above, a small detail of the installation titled "Opera for a Small Room" where multiple turntables & speakers take you on an operatic journey of stunning magnitude. Go see it. You won't regret it. AGO until August 18th.

Other exhibit titles within the "Memory Palace" : Road Trip; The Storm Room; Experiment in F# Minor (fabulous) ; The Dark Pool; The Killing Machine; The Muriel Lake Incident. (at AGO, 4th floor, til August 18 / 2013)

In addition, installed in the main floor Henry Moore Sculpture Centre, Janet Cardiff's Millenium Prize winning sound installation "The Forty Part Motet" : 8 five-part choirs (all members of the uk's Salisbury Cathedral Choir), 40 speakers. You may never want to leave.

Monday, February 11, 2013

a day in the life of ....

Candid street photography, El Jem, Tunisia....location of one of the finest Roman amphitheatres in the world. A pic taken in that split second of intuition that sets the heart racing when it comes to candid photography. You don’t know what it is you’re looking for until you see it. There!! Shoot that!! Click. On this occasion… an empty street of El Jem … a woman alone ... walking away ….. relieving the burden of her woven market basket by lifting it over the head & resting its weight on her back & shoulder … a small black plastic bag swinging from the hand of the other arm. Was attracted to the colour of her coat, my kind of khaki green, but not consciously aware of its graceful swing around her body until I down- loaded. Nor was I aware of capturing her in almost dancer’s mid-step or of the diagonal shadow that cuts its way along the wall & through her body, perfectly aligned with the slant of the basket. Details that came into play in the fraction of a second it took for the lens to blink.

Thursday, January 31, 2013

berber boy of the sahara ....

The indigenous Berbers, conquered by the invading Arabs of the 7th Century, make up only 1% of Tunisia's population today ... though 50% or more of Tunisians likely have ancient Berber ancestors. Traditionally a nomadic tribe, their urge to roam is curtailed by Tunisia's current laws of compulsory education for their children & have mostly settled in the desert regions of the south, travelling only outside the school year. Sad to say, their native language, 'Tamazight', never recognized as an official language of the country & not taught in the schools, is dying out.

The boy, Musbah, was carrying a small desert fox, hoping for a dinar from me for a chance to have my photo taken holding the fox. He got his dinar .. but for a photograph of him, not the fox.   *~*

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

tunisian sunrise .....

tunisian sunrise ..... by ana_lee_smith
tunisian sunrise ....., a photo by ana_lee_smith on Flickr.

from the beach at Paradis Palace Hotel, Hammamet, Tunisia.

Tunisia has 1300 kilometres ( 819 m) of coastline on the Mediterranean Sea. Hammamet was the first tourism destination of Tunisia. Located on the south-east of the northern peninsular of Cap Bon, on the Gulf of Hammamet, its golden beaches & temperate climate make it a popular destination for those seeking fun-in-the-sun all-inclusive style vacations. However, the tourism economy has suffered greatly since the Tunisian revolution of Jan 2011 that triggered Arab Spring across north africa & the middle east. Even slashed prices can't tempt the overly cautious tourist back, it seems. Too bad. Our 3 week trip, November 2012,  to this culturally rich & geographically diverse country, which started in Hammamet,  was an all time bargain with nary a single moment of not feeling safe.