(mainly) Wordless Wednesday

From the 1978 War of the Worlds album; Justin Hayward singing Forever Autumn. It’s been in my head for a couple of days.

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Pleasant to the ear

little tom guitar

Still one of my favourite photos. The boy-child with his first guitar. Photo: Su Leslie, 2006

My son is a talented musician who finds little time to play anymore — which is a shame as I’ve always enjoyed listening to him (even in the early days when his repertoire consisted of riffs from Crazy Frog and Smoke on the Water).

Yesterday he told me he’s going to a concert and sent me a link to the act performing. Given the recent divergence in our musical tastes, I wasn’t expecting to like it, but (and I won’t name names) it was better than I expected, if a bit repetitive.

Pleasant-sounding — but only in small doses.

Ragtag Daily Prompt | euphonious

On ritual, music and chocolate fish

Twenty years ago, we had a naming ceremony for the boy-child.

It was a big, kiwi-casual, outdoors sort of event with family and friends — people we wanted to play a part in our baby son’s life.

Long on socialising and short on formality, we kept speeches to a minimum, and the closest we came to a blessing was a beautiful a capella version of Bob Dylan’s Forever Young, sung by the boy-child’s aunt, Anu Grace.

And the connection to today’s Ragtag Prompt — fish? Anu’s band at the time was called Chocolate Fish. You can hear her sing Forever Young on their album Live at Vino Vino.

“Rows and floes of angel hair…”

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Afternoon cloud at Lucas Creek at Greenhithe Wharf. Su Leslie 2018

I seem to have acquired Both Sides Now as an ear worm; singing it almost unconsciously in the last few days.

It’s probably a sign that I’m ready for the annual Christmas Love Actually screening — Emma Thompson’s scene as a wife realising her husband is unfaithful (with Joni Mitchell soundtrack), being by far the best part of a patchy, yet strangely watchable, movie.

Posted to Six Word Saturday— hosted by Debbie at Travel with Intent

Culture, Heritage, and International Museum Day

Entrance, Te Papa Tongarewa -- Museum of New Zealand, Wellington, NZ. Image: Su Leslie, 2014

Te Papa Tongarewa — Museum of New Zealand, Wellington, NZ. Image: Su Leslie, 2014

Today is International Museum Day (IMD). Museums and art galleries have always been amongst my happy places — oases of culture, history and learning. Places to make discoveries, to connect with the past, and to dream.

The theme of this year’s IMD isMuseums and contested histories: Saying the unspeakable in museums.” According to the International Council of Museums:

This theme focuses on the role of museums that, by working to benefit society, become hubs for promoting peaceful relationships between people. It also highlights how the acceptance of a contested history is the first step in envisioning a shared future under the banner of reconciliation. Media release for launch of IMD: ICoM, May 18, 2017

Like most cultural institutions, museums have traditionally represented culture and heritage from a particular perspective — that of the society’s dominant groups. Women, ethnic and religious minorities, and members of various sub-cultures have tended to find our stories either absent, or told through a lens not our own.

Definitions of “culture” are themselves contested, and in fact I can remember a time in New Zealand when there was widespread popular debate about whether this country could be said to have “a culture” — and if so, of what it might consist.

In 1980, Kiwi band, The Knobz, released the song, Culture, in response to then Prime Minister Rob Muldoon’s assertion that pop music was not “culture.”

Thankfully, New Zealand, and the culture sector has moved on a bit.

I hope that this year’s Museum Appreciation Day theme will encourage both dialogue, and popular engagement with cultures, heritage and museums.

And ok: I’m trying to cover a few bases with this post:

Daily Post Photo Challenge | heritage

Sarah at Art Expedition‘s celebration of the National Appreciation Days that take place in May. Please visit to see her creative responses to these Days.

NZ Music Month