In this blog we will share with you our vision of beauty, balance, harmony.

As Mark Leach writes in his book Raw Colour with Pastels: “Sound is all around us, and it is musicians who refine that sound into something of beauty. As a painter, I have always felt that my purpose is to craft colour in a similar way, to see through the confusion and seek harmony and beauty.”

And we add: Words, fragments of sentences, spoken noise is all around us, and Ken arranges words in such a way as to capture beauty in the accidental, the ambient soundtrack of life.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

We wish all of you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Fiesole 14 x 19,5 cm - 5,5 x 7,7''


Ute, our landlady, is afflicted with
just enough craziness to make me
want to keep my distance—
but there is none. There are olive trees
and pine forests and some drop dead
lovely and untamed-looking chestnut trees.
You can hear the wild boar snuffling at two
in the morning helping themselves to weird
Ute’s vegetable patch. But there’s no distance to speak of.

Ute’s come to press magic feathers and beads
against my bronchitis, hold my hand, and chant something
medicinal. Maybe she isn’t crazy, she means well, she’s
eccentric. Maybe she won’t kill us in the
dead of night, slice and dice our bodies,
hang us out to dry somewhere in the garden
then store us in jars with her jams, peppers, and olives.

We’ll see. Most evenings I read Schopenhauer in a
deeply carved throne-like African chair crowned
with the pipe-smoking head of a village elder.
Weary of the German’s pessimism, no matter
how much I agree with it(look, if life isn’t
one long suffering road trip, etc.), I light 
my own small pipe, also made in Africa.
I then bless the valley below me with an improvised
slightly stoned gesture of acceptance, because
at this moment anyway, life is just too good not to.

Ute, dressed in threadbare sacred gown of
faded purple festooned with scattered moons, ex-
ploding stars and Zoroastrian charms, is crossing the dried
out lawn on bare feet. She’s bearing a cup
of peppery hot chocolate. If I could fly away
I’d alight and perch on the black tower
of Larciano, some hundred yards down
from us, and observe her from a safe distance
where, just beneath me, a wedding party would unveil its bride.

Philip Glass - The Kiss

Thursday, December 13, 2012

A few takes on life in the East of Germany

Dark Edge 26 x 26 cm



I have to admit that there are
certain parts of myself I don’t want to visit. Just as there are
a handful of market towns on both sides
of the Polish-German border, part industrial,
part rustic, and part something else
eerie if not downright frightening, that I
don’t want to visit either unless, you know,
I feel compelled one day to write
the history of Cabbage and its myriad manifestations—  
the Cabbage War of 1688-89, the annual Cabbage Parade and its Queen,
the putative Death of Cabbage, even the full-diaper stench
of sauerkraut on a Sunday afternoon in October—
and what it means to the people who live in that haunted scenery.
From my fourth floor observation post here
in the capital of all things Prussian, and where it’s
the potato rather than cabbage that reigns, I can see a pleasant distraction
taking shape: a half-dozen ex-roadies(long graying hair,
tattered Led Zep t-shirts)playing boule beneath the elms and beeches,
the hardening chestnut leaves, a dozen beer
bottles lined up on a bench. I can just make out some
of their routine insults, curses, an outraged complaint or two.
The color of their attitude and atmosphere is Newcastle Brown Ale.
And if they have anything to hide, they’re not showing it.

  The subtle music of Boule! This venue is actually quite close to where we live!

Saturday, December 8, 2012

It's very, very cold in Germany

Humid Day - They only talk about the weather 40 x 30 cm


Heat in any urban setting tends to remind
me of the day a trio of total strangers 
wanted me dead, or said they did—I was walking down
a Berkeley street, three women strutting
in my direction as if they’d just emerged
from the OK Corral, spoiling for a fight, one saying
to her pardners—twice,
in case I didn’t hear the first time—“Good
day to kill a man, don’t you think?”
I’ve never believed anything more in my life.

It’s not only the heat. There’s a suggestion
of indecent exposure in the air. On the doorstep
of a neighborhood youth hostel
lush cabbage roses, sated with
light, nod off like junkies.
Things that didn’t have
an odor before
have one now, multiplied x
number of times, some even taking on
elements of dreamlife. Reminds me of

a dream I once had— I’m standing in a corner
of a dance studio (New York City
I think or Chicago) my nose
twitchy with the perfume and sweat rising
from a young dancer’s skin as she stretches
into an arabesque, holds it, an arrow of desire,
her whole body vibrating slowly. The choreographer
admonishes her to stop moving. “I can’t,” she says
through clenched teeth, “it’s so fucking hot, I’m
so hot, “—then I woke up to
a voice on the BBC World Service saying,
“…after which the organism grew and multiplied.”

The Loving Spoonful - Summer in the City