Wednesday, 30 September 2015

Paris Today

One of my favorite sculptures in Paris. President Gaston Monnerville. Do what you must.

I can almost feel the block of clay before it was cast into this monolith

Do what you must.

Wednesday, 23 September 2015

I won the International Prize Michelangelo!

Congratulations! You won the International Prize Michelangelo.

Dear Artist,
I am very proud to award you with the International Prize Michelangelo - Artists at the Jubilee
The Prize is for the Artists that are worth for their artistic merit

I merit the prize, of course I do. Why else would they pick me? They are very proud of me.

You will be awarded on December 10th, 2015, inside the  Cardinal Cesi Palace in Rome
If the artist will not be present at the awards ceremony, the prize will be sent home.
It is one of the most prestigious art awards awarded in the heart of Rome.
In conjunction with the opening of the 2015 Jubilee, the prestigious rooms of “Palazzo
Cardinal Cesi” in Rome, will host the awarding ceremony of the International event ‘’INTERNATIONAL PRIZE MICHELANGELO -Artists at the Jubilee’’. It is an exclusive prize representing the Mosessculpture, one of the most important works by Michelangelo Buonarroti. 

It's exclusive. Oh yeah!

Important celebrities from the world of culture will be present at the ceremony 
and the talented artists will be awarded with an important prize for their careers.
In the November/December number of the magazine Effetto Arte, we will realize an introductive piece about Rome Jubilee and the several masterpieces of the city; following to the piece the publication of the selcted artists’ artworks. 

I thrilled I've been "selcted." 

The Palazzo Cardinal Cesi in rome, is far just 100mt from Vatican Museums, Sistine Chapel and St. Peter’s Basilica, where during the same days will take place the Jubilee.

Where's rome?  Maybe they mean Rome. Is that Mount Vatican or Mt One-Hundred? Where's the the in this sentence?

The Palace has hosted important men of culture, including: the New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, the President of Mexico, Enrique Peña Nietoand important Ambassadors from around the world.
The prize is given to those artists who has been chosen by Mr. Someone and Someone Else.

Squee. I'm in good company Neitoand was there.

You will be eligible for: 
A whole page on the November/December number of the magazine into the column “INTERNATIONAL PRIZE MICHELANGELO - Artists at the JUBILEE”
- Publication on a quarter of page into the official catalog of the event.
- Conferment of the Michelangelo Award, a sculpture representing Michelangelo's Moses (20 cm/h) on December 10th 2015 at Palazzo Someplace in Rome.

One of those resin Moses sculptures I can buy at the leaning tower of Pisa?  They're going to put me into a column? What about some of those Leaning Tower of Pisa Boxer Shorts?

- Insertion of the name of the artist into the advertisement pages dedicated to the event on
magazines, posters, totems and invitations.

I've never been on a totem. I can't wait.


- Two copies of the magazine  (November/December). N°1 copy of ''The'' catalog.
- An assignment certificate in a precious celebratory parchment

I get an assignment?  I wonder if I'll have to take exams. Perhaps they need a content writer.

To take part you must send:
- Filled out application form
- 1 Picture of your Artwork
- Copy of the payment
By e-mail to: 
or by mail to: 
Dott. Someone
Via Somestreet

Cost of the proposal: 330€

Wait a minute, I thought I won?

Deadline: October 10, 2015
Please, at the order form pay the requested amount for your choice with a Bank transfer:
IBAN CODE: IT-- XXXX redacted XXXX XXXx @#?! 969
BIC/SWIFT: #@&69#@ redacted             
BANK: BANCO Somebank - 
(Please specify in the reason, your name and the name of the event)
You can also pay via paypal at this address: ..696##!! redacted


I'll put this on my to do list.  Meanwhile, you can take me off your mailing list unless you want to hire an editor or an English speaking content writer.  I'll send you my paypal account and an invoice for editing suggestions to the above.

Saturday, 12 September 2015

Sponge Bob Shoefiti in Paris

Hanging from a wire in the fifth arrondissement, is Sponge Bob. He's been there since, like forever. Always smiling.

Friday, 11 September 2015

Expat memories of September 11th, 2001

Parisian Shoefiti hooked by gravity.

Where were you on September 11, 2001?

Fourteen years ago we were all somewhere. Some were too young to remember, like when I was little and my father awoke me to show me the black and white television when the first astronauts walked on the moon.  They planted a flag.  The American flag, a flag from the planet Earth.

I confuse this man-on-the-moon memory with the night my father awoke me to show the cat had kittens.  She took to the unused space under the kitchen sink.  Childhood memories spark from photographs and can develop through stories parents tell. Or from remembering extraneous events seemingly related.  Fact becomes fiction and vice versa. They become beleifs.

My memories of September 11th 2001 ring crystal in my mind.

I was in my atelier-gallery in Florence Italy with my ex-husband, a wonderful man and great painter.  We had just opened our painting space after years of street vending.  We opened on September 6th  2001.  Those were the days of plenty in the seven most industrialized countries. Italy was one of them. Our atelier was in Florence.

A wonderful couple came into our shop.  I’ll call it a shop but it really was our painting atelier, in Florence’s downtown gallery district.  On via Ghibellina. Frescoes arched across the ceiling, terracotta tiles covered the floor, our paintings lined four walls.  The couple told me they were on a win-win vacation. They loved our paintings, paid for a few and said they would return to pick up the packed canvases with frames.  We didn’t have a radio, we listened to classical music, heads in the clouds.  On the shop window, I’d taped a photo of one of my best clients who posed next to Bill Clinton, plus several photos of myself on NBC, clearly marking our space as American friendly.  This was the touristic district of Florence.  We made and sold paintings for the tourism market.  We painted poppies by the field.  Americans were our best clients after the Berlin wall fell and the Germans counted their marks and after I was interviewed by Matt Laur live from Florence.

We packed the paintings, carefully.  We waited for them to return.

A Florentine woman across the street who held an electrician’s shop came to tell me what was happening.  I didn’t understand what she was talking about.  She had a TV in the back room. It was inconceivable. A movie.  She drug me across the street and pulled me to the back room.


I saw the television. 

It was after the second tower had been hit. It was news. 

I didn’t react, not immediately. But I got on the telephone to speak with my family.  An expat calling home. It took hours of busy signals before I reached home.  My father was stuck in Washington, he could see the smoke off the pentagon, but he was fine.

A crazy bum on the street walked by the shop. He was a Northern European, with letters tattooed on his forehead.  A vocal, insane man, tall and someone I’d cross the street to avoid but someone I saw almost everyday.  He ranted more than usual, like there was something in the air. He moved on. Then a American lady came in the shop.

She’d just arrived in Florence, rented an apartment and was trying to stay awake to knock jet lag. She’d turned on the television and thought she was watching a movie.  Internet wasn’t available. WIFI wasn’t conceived. She didn’t have cable. After the movie went no where, she realized she was watching an Italian news channel.  She left her apartment and happened into our shop.  I didn’t react. It was all just too weird.

During that afternoon it was like traffic stopped in Florence.  Traffic was insane in Florence. Our shop was up the street from the place were certain guys prayed.  I don’t know what they called the place. It was a shop like ours. Terracotta floors, four walls but barren. Hundreds of these guys walked the street, against traffic, the wrong way. Chins in the air. 

I removed the photos in the window and closed the door. It had an automatic lock, you had to be buzzed in. The wonderful couple returned. Their smiles gone, bewilderment and worry filled their eyes. Their win-win vacation over.

That night a friend of mine told me she went to dinner at her boyfriend’s restaurant.  Many Florentine shop owners, not Italians but nationality is unimportant, dined there, people who sold leather jackets and bags to tourists. My friend told me these people uncorked champagne and told the whole restaurant they would send their children to death as kamikazes. It was appalling. Remembering is appalling.  Others told me the American’s deserved it.  I wonder what they think now? After the Charlie Hebdo attacks, after a little girl carried a bomb into a Nigerian market, while Syria is still happening. Were these people not living it up in the win-win laic land of plenty? Spitting in the hand that fed them.

A news stand window the day after the Charlie Hebdo attacks. The front page of every paper from around the world was displayed.
I reacted a week later after seeing my fellow compatriots walk in single file behind their tour guides.  Shoulders hunched. Like dogs with tails between their legs. Dollars locked in their pockets. Worried for their family back home and probably unable to conceive that they were away, partying and incapable to return home. They were stranded in a foreign place because all flights States-bound were cancelled.

I'm reacting now, fourteen years later.

I can’t celebrate this day, September 11th. But I do stand up for my right as a laic woman who can speak freely and dress the way she desires.

I cannot fathom the hate for fellow humans on the planet earth. In a solar system. In a universe surrounded by stars. 

I cannot fathom gravity. How shoes hang from a wire. Fathom why all human beings, plants, animals remain with their paws stuck to a ball made of minerals and gasses. And not fall off into space.  I cannot fathom how fish remain swimming in water and not float off into the air.  I cannot fathom killing for a belief that another human being invented.

Today I am in Paris. I walk the streets and see signs of past wars. Bullet scars on buildings. Plaques on schools remembering deported children. A plaque in the metro station where a bomb ripped open a metro car in 1995.

September 11th 2001, I will never forget.