Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Yellow Yesterday

My name is Lauren and I'm a dirty old chair addict.

I had to stop home on my lunch break yesterday and spotted some really amazing fiberglass school chairs on the side of the road a block over and up from my house. I couldn't tell if they were out for free or waiting to go in someone's truck, so I cruised by, went about what I had to take care of at home, but, being the discarded treasure junky that I am, left myself the above sick and obsessive note to swing back around and see if they had been abandoned. So I did, and when I got there they lookd alone and lonely so I scooped them up, didn't even close my tailgate, looped around and dropped them off. Aren't they sooo cute?!

Then on my way home I stopped by this lovely tree that's blooming with the most vibrant yellow flowers. I always pass it and it lights up my belly and makes my cheeks warm, it's just that kind-of thing that makes me feel happy and fortunate to be here and getting by and passing the most wonderful yellow flowers tree on my way home from work everyday. It makes the things that seem not so good, seem not so bad, at least for a little while.

Southern Exposure Annual Art Auction!

This Saturday is the super fabulous SOEX auction, which I hear is thing to behold. I have a piece being auctioned off and am in good company of 170ish artists, several of which I actually know and might even be friends with. It's, by my soon-to-be-unemployed terms, a high rollers event, but if you've got $30 laying around and are good at planning ahead, you can get an advance ticket here, or $40 will get you in at the door. I hear there's lots of free food, booze and schmoozing, and if I partake enough in the first two, I just might make it to the third. Oh, and the art looks good too. You can get a sneak peek here. And you can get a not so sneak peek of my floppy folding chair being auctioned below.

(soft sculpture forever!)

Sunday, April 20, 2008

mr. bartlett

oh my gosh! my delightful friend gregory has started a blog. He is a brilliant artist, a garden whiz, a dancing machine, a soon-to-be san francisco transplant by way of being a massachusetts ex-pat, and he looks better in my red loafers than I do. Check him out!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

[heart] garden [heart]

I feel like every time I drop by here, it starts with something to the tune of how busy and exhausted I am. While that may be all too true, and while I may not be finding much time for kicking back or engaging in social activity, perhaps with a chilled adult beverage in my hand, I have been making some time for my lovely, albeit humble, garden.

Oh, garden. What would I do without you? How would I spend that awkward 45 minutes every morning before work because I wake up too early? What would I get excited about if it wasn't the recent availability of brussel sprout seedlings, or tomato babies, or soaker hoses, or the sci-fi and amazing tricks I learned at fruit tree pruning class?

Without further ado, and my ramblings muddling up the purity of my garden love sentiment, here are some photos of green stuff from my little urban-sylvan nook.

(since we're (begrudgingly) renters we didn't want to go through the trouble of installing a drip system, but we still wanted all the benefits of ease and water conservation. we're doing our best with a system of soaker hoses and little channels to direct the water. i'll surely report back about how it goes. oh, and that's pickle, my baby boy.)

(i know it's late for peas but that's the beauty of living in the bay area. don't be jealous, ok?)

(i learned this trick at an organic fruit tree pruning class at Garden for the Environment. if you cut a small half moon shaped notch over top of a bud you want to sprout, but isn't sprouting, it will force all the nutrients into the bud and get it to produce a shoot. my technical terms are willy-nilly but look, it works!)

(this fern is an east coast transplant just like me. it came from my mom's garden. how amazing! granted there were four and only one survived, but i still think it's pretty incredible.)

(babies! marigolds, tomatoes, zuchinis, borage, basil, mint! yum!)

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Sam Lopes "House of No"

Erin and I went to (or rather tried to go to) the Oakland Art Murmur this past friday. We were foiled by not being able to park Moji's van and not being dressed warmly enough or motivated enough to walk a great distance to make it to most of the gallery's on the art walk. We did make our first and most important stop at Blank Space Gallery to see our friend and former roomie, Sam Lopes's solo show entitled "House of No".

I ran into Sam the other day at a little undergrad panel discussion that we were both presenting on, so I got a sneak peek of his new work. He's screenprinting interiors of houses over abstract colored pencil, which makes for some really electric combinations. He mentioned something about feeling like the house was alive, and I think he's really capturing that in this work, the intensity of the colored pencil and the layering really make it feel like you're seeing the innards of the space. there's something simultaneously really tense and quiet about them. And of course, there's still bears. and cats. So really, you can't lose.

The show is up til April 28 and it's jam packed with work. Sam has a million ideas and is quite prolific, so you should see it now, because his next show is bound to be a totally new set of work. I forgot to take my camera with me to the show so below is some of Sam's slightly older, but still really recent work from a different series entitled "Monument". And there's a ton more amazing stuff on his website to check out. Prolific, really, I wasn't exaggerating.


Whew. I know it's been a little while. Maybe a few days more than a little while. But I have plenty of excuses, believe me. I have been sick as a dog and job hunting and spring cleaning and sleeping way more than usual for no apparent reason. I'm beat. B.E.A.T. But I'm hanging in there and Erin and I are both eating solid food again so we're finally going grocery shopping today, and we're going to start a cleanse so that we'll both be good as new in no time.

We'll be doing an ayurvedic cleanse which is part of panchakarma which roughly translates to "five actions", although I admittedly will not be doing all the steps that you're supposed to, I'm going to stick to the eating and the oil massage and the steam room (not so bad, eh?). So my version of the cleanse consists of eating basmati rice with ghee (clarified butter) and herbs and mung dal soup, and drinking lots of water with lemon, maple syrup, and cayenne pepper. I'm also going to be mixing some oils to externally pull the toxins out, probably with things like juniper, jasmine, lavender, sandalwood and tea tree oil. Then I'm going to sneak into the steam room at Erin's gym and hopefully sweat out whatever's left.

I'll be back with some photos and recipes, and of course a new sense of clarity, peace, and focus, which I will acheive only after I have ridded myself of the desire to eat half a dozen english tea cakes from sconehenge.

for real.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

repurposed kitchen bits

Another cute idea I picked up from Apartment Therapy:SF via Better Homes and Gardens. They give a couple different kitchen items you can re-use to organize your little goodies, but I'm especially smitten with the fork idea.

disguise your rainwater barrel

i had mentioned a little bit ago that my mom was taking a sustainable gardening class, and when i was visiting a few weeks ago we got to talking about rainwater conservation. she was mentioning the standard plastic barrel under the downspout technique and how she thought it was a great idea, but that the barrels were kind-of an eyesore. i agreed, despite my generally prevailing, treehugging disposition, i am also heavily oriented towards good aesthetics, and i like my garden to look pretty just as much as anyone else. so i was delighted this morning when i ran across this idea at re-nest this morning: to grow climbing plants over top of your barrel! what a great idea, so simple and easy to do. read the rest here...