A Guardian article on the British obsession with Italian cookery got me thinking about why I love Italian food. If I had to choose a favourite cuisine it would be Italian. Apart from the obvious – the taste – what is it about Italian food that so darn great? It’s easy, it’s the passion. Italian food is about art, not science. It is rustic, nourishing for body and soul, it is served with love. I might be being a little short-sighted here, but I cannot imagine Italian families feeding their kids chips, kebabs, etc when Italian food is so entrenched in family and community.
I am an absolute sucker for a sad story. Meet Alfie, this photo was taken when he was at the RSPCA, which is where he’s spent most of his life. He’s about a year old and he’s never lived in a proper home. He is very, very nervous and has spent the past 11 hours hiding under my sofa. But I am hoping that one day he will be brave enough to come out.
This evening I was fortunate enough to go to a poetry reading by Carol Ann Duffy. Now I know a lot of people might think of a poetry reading as a stuffy, dry affair but this was far from it.
My expectations were high because I am a massive fan of Duffy’s work. I bought The World’s Wife when I was the tender age of nineteen. I loved it. It was funny and clever and thoughtful. I had previously never considered that poetry could be this much fun. I’ve bought every collection she has had published since. I have to say I think it’s fantastic that Duffy’s poetry is studied in schools now, I kind of wish it had been when I was there.
So back to the evening: less than ideal sound levels meant that she was stooping over towards the microphone to ensure we could all hear properly, and she did it with grace and humour, although it can’t have been a comfortable position to stand in for an hour. The poems, funny on the page, were hilarious when read by their charismatic author. And the stories she told us about how the poems came about, or things that had come from writing them were similarly entertaining. I dragged along a friend who had never read a word of her poetry, and I think he left a convert. It was utterly thrilling meeting her for a book signing afterwards and it was a marvelous evening. If you ever get the chance to hear her, I suggest you do so.
If you were exhibiting at New Blood I hope it all went well. I exhibited there myself when I was a student, twice. The experience was fantastic. Maybe I’ll try to relive it next year…
New work added – some more recent projects still to come.
I couldn’t have realised it, but the photo I posted of Boz yesterday was the last one. He died of heart failure this morning and I am heart broken. He was an awesome little cat, an amazing sense of trust for one who’d been through so much. I will miss him terribly.
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Deciding to upgrade my website from a simple blog site to this more flexible site has been a mammoth task – shooting photographs of all my latest work, and digging out images of everything else.
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