Monday, January 31, 2011

To Go With the Pants

OK,  further to my post about the "Palazzo Pants"...... What about somewhere to hang

out in while wearing them?  Sometimes I have a fantasy of running away to live in a place like this.

To live on a top floor with windows always wide open.  Lots of loud music, latin or opera.  To smoke skinny cigars and wear floppy caftans.  Or bandana halter dresses and big gold ear hoops.  To write short stories of somewhat shocking tenor. To have a "salon"with odd people dropping by at odd hours.

Offering illicit substances, and exotic sweetmeats.  And none of us ever much desirous to leave the premises again...........

Have YOU ever actually lived such a life?  Me, no.  I was brought up to be a nice Chinese girl with sensible habits.  

I DID actually live in a very similar place once, architecturally.  But it was BROWN.  In a cold climate, where the driveway would accumulate ice in its ruts, and men with pickup trucks and cowboy hats would get stuck in them, and end up on the stairs.  The brown house had a sleeping balcony at the front.  And the front entry smelled like Grandma's house or more especially, like pancakes on a griddle.  At all hours of the day and night.

A previous tenant had left a tin of "Petit Beurre" cookies in a kitchen drawer.  With no cookies in it.

It was not quite this kind of place......

Not quite.  The Palazzo in Paradise.   For the strivers and divers.  And the people in the flow-ey pants.

(Oh yes I would sometimes, like to run away.  Would you?)

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Summer Fashion Preview

It's time!

Photo: Lina Baretti's private collection

for bandana halters and (what are we calling them these days - palazzos, elephant bells?) and flow-ey trousers to have their moment in the sun again!

NOW you know!  I (oops) did it again! 

Yes, I reinstated my World of Interiors subscription and inside the February 2011 issue, I found the wonderful jewelry of Lina Baretti (above left), made sometimes of glass, velvet, cork and straw.  Her work was embraced by the designers Elsa Schiaparelli and Cristobal Balenciaga.  Here, the blog Bibelotophile has posted pictures from the WOI spread.

Would you wear a bandana halter top?  Know anyone who has?

Friday, January 28, 2011

Spring in Los Angeles

(Peach blossoms!)  Wish you could be here sharing it all with me!  Have a wonderful weekend!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Just Because

I haven't used "succulents" in a sentence lately.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Good Things Come to Those Who Wait - Suzanne's Magic

Some of you may already know Suzanne and her blog, sakurasnow.  I love Suzanne's papercuts and her lovely AND edge-y with a little wink approach to the world.  So of course I couldn't resist when she made cards available in her etsy shop just before Christmas. 

I ordered papercut cards like the lovely ones that she demonstrated the making of, on her site. Eventually, we agreed on an exchange (but no moi-made art from my side), based on which I would also become the lucky recipient of some of her Wolf-and-a-Bear-In-the-Woods gorgeous silkscreen cards.

Good news, Suzanne got her package just about Christmas time.  Whereas the Paradis family, not so much!  Poor lovely package was held hostage by the forces of POST for nearly a period of TWO FULL MONTHS!   (Can ya believe it?!)

Much to the dismay and lingering angst of both parties, sending and receiving, who also ended up spending WAYYYY to much time moping around our respective post offices.  (Well I was moping!)

BUT TODAY IT ARRIVED!!!!!  I was so thrilled.  Was I really afraid it was going to end up the Paddington Bear of Papercut Packages?  I was!

So can you tell?  She wrapped it so beautifully, I cannot bear to open up EVERYTHING yet!

The package wrapping was such that the post-office lady and I had quite a little moment when I picked it up, as she ran her finger over the curlicues of white gouache with which Suzanne had embellished the address.......

exclaiming, "SO PRETTY!  I LIKE IT!"  So it seems Suzanne's artistry had ultimately melted the internal organs of those infamously stony hearted "posties" and evoked in them all a grand passion to ensure that this delightful package would indeed find it's rightful home with it's properly loving and appreciative new owner!

Awwww!  Makes ya feel a little Amelie all over, don't it?

So really, everybody, make sure to click the links above - there are more Wolf-and-Bear cards available!  How can you not?!  

And once again....with feeling - THANKS SUZANNE!

Corner View - Favorite Fine Artist of Today, Jeremy Miranda

Straggling in with a slightly belated Corner View......Hope you'll find it was worth the wait!

I found this painter through Sophie Munns, who ALWAYS finds the BEST THINGS.

Jeremy Miranda is a young painter, working in Salem, Massachusetts

He has burgled my dreamlife.

A great artist is able to tap into a collective consciousness and then hold it up to society as a mirror. Yes?  I think he succeeds!

His artistry is outstanding: the fluidity of the brushwork, the ease of the renderings, the trueness of the imagery and the geometry.  The liveliness of the surfaces.  The realism and immediacy of the spaces created.  I think he is absolutely successful in rendering what he imagines and is able to put it all together into compelling narratives in a very contemporary way.

Some in the world of art have said many times that "painting is dead".  Looking at Jeremy Miranda's work, you just can't agree.  This young painter is taking the medium where it had needed to go for a long time already.  BRAVO!

Less ambitious pieces are available at VERY reasonable prices on Jeremy Miranda's Etsy site.

For more Corner Views, please check in with:  jane ian - bonnie - joyce - kim - kay -trinsch - ritva - francesca - state of bliss cabrizette - isabelle - janis -kari - jgy - lise - cate - otli - dorte - b -sophie - mcgillicutty - sunnymama -daan - ibb - pienduzz - kelleyn - ninjasammi - theresa - cherry b - juliette -shokoofeh - cole - grey lemon -lucylaine - lynn - skywriting - anna -dorit - conny - l´atelier - kamana -anne marie - rosamaría - victoria -tikjewit - juniper - annabel - andrea -valerie - merel soisses - mlle paradiscacahuete - wander chow - barbara -emily - tally - nadine - matilda - don -flowtops - susanna - tania - dana -ingrid - tzivia - mezza - lollipop - mari

Monday, January 24, 2011

Paradise in Pieces

I'm regrouping a little after my hectic weekend.  Here's a  few little somethings that have caught my eye this past year.  Hope you like them!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Got A Little Carried Away This Weekend.........

I almost brought home a puppy.  A much bigger one than this!  Can you imagine what my cats would have said?!

What did you all do? 

We have been with family.  Eating.  Eating.  Eating.  And trying to fit in a little laughter too.  Tonight we will be with friends.   More of the same.  Life is Good!

Friday, January 21, 2011

And the Curtain Rises, On.............

just another Act in our unfolding saga:

Remember those neighbors I posted about here?  This is what the front yard looked liked in the twilight just about a week ago.  Do you think they know we're watching?

Anything heroic or fanciful in your plans for the weekend?

Hope it's a good one!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Getting in Touch With My Roots This Weekend

What do your roots look like?

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Mom's Got a Few Things Lined Up

She'll be back with alot more to say for herself, soon!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Corner View - Organic Forms

At the Museum of Craft and Folk Art, San Francisco.  October 2010.

99 cent Store, Los Angeles.  December 2010

Find more Corner Views:  jane ian - bonnie - joyce - kim - kay -trinsch - ritva - francesca - state of bliss cabrizette - isabelle - janis -kari - jgy - lise - cate - otli - dorte - b -sophie - mcgillicutty - sunnymama -daan - ibb - pienduzz - kelleyn - ninjasammi - theresa - cherry b - juliette -shokoofeh - cole - grey lemon -lucylaine - lynn - skywriting - anna -dorit - conny - l´atelier - kamana -anne marie - rosamaría - victoria -tikjewit - juniper - annabel - andrea -valerie - merel soisses - mlle paradiscacahuete - wander chow - barbara -emily - tally - nadine - matilda - don -flowtops - susanna - tania - dana -ingrid - tzivia - mezza - lollipop - mari

Monday, January 17, 2011

Donna Wilson - UK Designer

Isn't she lovely?!  (Stevie still on my mind, can you tell?)

Photo: Matt Munro; Elle Decoration UK, December 2010

Here's her website if you want to purchase a Donna Wilson something.   I've had a hankering for one of her trays for quite awhile.  My favorite local store Reform School, (click here for site and save UK shipping if you're in the states) sells it.  YES!

Here's Donna's blog.  Should you so desire.

Do you love the green tights and necklace too?!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Love Needs Love Today - Dr. King's Day

I've posted a couple of these videos before.  But they still work for me for this day, and everyday!  My cats love Stevie Wonder too!

I learned the Black National Anthem when I was 14.  And this was how I learned to sing it.  Tell me, is it not gorgeous?!  

Good morn or evening friends,
Here's your friendly announcer
I have some serious news to pass on
 to everybody ----
What I'm about to say
Could mean the world's disaster
Could change your joy and laughter
To tears and pain
Its that:

Loves in need of love today
Don't delay
Send yours in right away
Hate's going round
 breaking many hearts
Stop it please
Before it's gone too far

The force of evil plans
 To make you its possession
 And it will if we let it 
destroy everybody.
We all must take precautionary measures
If love and peace you treasure
then you'll hear me when I say:

Love's in need of Love today
Don't delay
Send yours in right away
Hate's going round
 breaking many hearts
Stop it please
 Before it's gone too far

It's up to you.......

Agony AND ecstasy:

A beautiful noise:

The coolest, meanest Cuban style "son" guitar playing:

and the best-ever, sly, Stevie Wonder smile!

Friday, January 14, 2011

It's the Weekend

What are you waiting for?

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Paris Revisited - The Beautiful People

Wouldn't it be lovely if it were summer again?

And we were all in our light clothes.

And a little more naked, with the breezes on our skin.

Feeling light.

And carefree.

Like one of those beautiful Paris people?

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Made in L.A.

..........via the  Huffington Post  on 12/21/10

In Culver City......a place to play at make believe!  Wouldn't you like a little one of your own?

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Singapore Part Three: Treasures and Temples

I always marvel at Indian temple art because of its almost cartoon-ey aesthetic which, because it is practically a thousand years old, creates expectations in me with my art history background, of something more sophisticated.

It does not have the heroic idealized beauty of Greek figurative sculpture, it does not have the pathos profundity and specificity of Roman portrait sculpture.  It does not have the dynamism of Italian renaissance works.  Or self-regarding wit of more modern sculptural explorations.

It has the folkloric appeal of simplified forms, exuberant color, and slave-ish faithfulness to tradition.

Nonetheless, I love it for it's whimsical, overt affection for its gods and for the feeling that anyone of these characters sharing space on a temple facade could, at the drop of  a hat, take flight.  And LAND in my backyard, or yours.

Sorry the pictures are not SO good, they were taken with an I-phone under less than ideal meteorological conditions.

The other aspect of Singapore that I find SOOOOOO appealing is one's ability to access OLD ASIA.

I have not been to mainland China but my understanding is that further to Soviet style communism which suppressed color and ornament, deeming it bourgeois, corrupt, and decadent, and since the New  Communist China has embraced safe Western  (American)  20th century aesthetics of neutral, characterless, restrained expression in design, that much of the color that is the cultural heritage of Chinese populations has been abandoned or suppressed.  In Singapore it is SO NOT THE CASE.  And I am GRATEFUL.

Mr. Paradis and I, on our last day in Singapore went on a mission to Geylang, an Eastern neighborhood of Singapore and currently reputed to be the red light district.  We were apprehensive about going, but the holy grail of the best execution of chili-crab by the "NO SIGNBOARD SEAFOOD COMPANY" gave us sufficient motivation to set aside our reservations and make the trek OUT.

I WOULD NOT HAVE MISSED THIS FOR THE WORLD!  Geylang is a neighborhood of local storefront shrines, wide boulevards, equally expansive awnings over welcoming sidewalk eateries and color for the pure sake of color, and for the sake of bringing pleasure to those who labor, pray and strive in its streets and byways.

Sadly we were not able to spend as much time there as we would have desired.  Which brings me to another story, and my warning to the wise:  These sorts of "ethnic neighborhoods" in Singapore are laced with open sewers of the raw concrete and 90 degree sharp angle kind.  (So you see, it is NOT the perfect, sanitized and baby-proofed environment that you might envision.)  The storm drains are not deep, but the sharp edges of the drain enclosures can do a lot of damage.

In his zeal to get a picture for Mlle Paradis of this delicious yellow temple with its dragons, because her camera battery had died,  Mr. Paradis stumbled into one of those open sewers, smashed his I-phone and tore up his shins fairly grievously.  With blood spurting everywhere and general pandemonium ensuing.....two exceedingly kind Singaporeans respectively watched over us and Mr. Paradis' improvised bandages of soiled Kleenex, fetched us a cab, and directed the driver to the nearest hospital open on a Sunday.

There Mr. Paradis was cheerily, swiftly and solicitously seen to.  With the Singaporean government picking up fully half of the 200 Dollar tab for medical treatment and urging on us what seemed like a year's supply of anti-biotics and pain killers FOR NO CHARGE WHATSOEVER!!!!!!!

So there Obama Health Care Reform!

And God forbid I ever again make remotely disparaging comments either in private OR PUBLIC about drippy, pale, bookish Chinese kids drifting around shopping malls in Singapore, because, on arrival at Tan Tock Seng Hospital it became quickly apparent to me that THEY are ACTUALLY, well...........DOCTORS!!!!!!!

I realize that Singapore is a benevolent dictatorship.  But in the face of malevolent, corporate incited anarchy, and a VENGEFUL God, which the U.S. seems to be increasingly on the track towards, I will take BENEVOLENT Gods and Governments under serious consideration.

I am also reproducing below, my further comment about why I felt I needed to say something about the past weekend's Arizona shootings.  I am not pure, and I reserve a certain privacy and anonymity to protect my husband, his job and my personal well-being.  But I nonetheless believe that the voices of sanity and reason have to rise above, repudiate and drown out the voices of hate.  Erego:

"Thanks everybody for commenting. I just feel that this is a very public activity that I'm taking part in, blogging, and even though I try to concern myself here mostly with pleasurable subjects, I am a serious person, trying to get on in the world as we all are, and I believe I have a responsibility to publicly reject the negative and irresponsible public behavior we see so much of lately. And I do believe that bad behavior has come from the political right.

I agree that we can't solve the folly and stupidity that mankind is inclined to, but not SO long ago, the U.S. was better than this, and set a better example for the rest of the world. Because of our increasingly irresponsible behavior, we are now a BAD example. And less safe from extremists and stupidity both within and without.

Mary, thanks for saying that I'm brave to speak out. All I can say is that there are people who want me to be afraid. And many of them aren't stupid. My fear would strengthen and serve them. I don't want to be made afraid and I hate myself when I let people frighten me. So I have to say something.

And that something is mostly, YES! WE CAN BE BETTER THAN THIS! 

And that's why I do Passage Paradis. To make a place to remember what is lost and hope I can inspire others to recreate it somehow, somewhere, and to have a place to discover what is wonderful, to honor and nurture and preserve those things so that we do have something of beauty and value to hand on to generations that follow us."


Thanks to everybody who posted encouraging words!