Sunday, September 22, 2019

Artnotes: Maybe Next Week

Pond, Borghese Gardens  Blair Pessemier  Acrylic/canvas  11 x 18   27 x 46cm   250.00

Pond at Borghese Gardens   Laurie Fox Pessemier  Acrylic/canvas   Sold

 Madagascar Circus   Blair Pessemier  Acrylic/canvas  14 x 29.5   35 x 75cm  325.00

Circus Vignola   Laurie Fox Pessemier  Acrylic/canvas 16 x 24  40 x 60cm 395.00

Chickens  Laurie Fox Pessemier   Acrylic/paper  17 x 25  41 x 63cm

Last Beach Day Blair Pessemier  Acrylic/canvas  14 x 16"  35 x 40cm 295.00

Portrait by Blair

There’s the most attractive moth on our front doormat right now.  He is a camel color with totally fuzzy head and long backward turning antennae (I try to find his technical name on Internet, but moth information is somewhat limited.  As near as I can tell, he’s a Wainscot Moth, or Mythimna pallens).  It’s the time of year insects are struggling to live, to reproduce, to last as long as possible or hunker down for next year.  Butterflies, bees, and whatnot are extracting the last bit of nectar from the flowers that are just barely hanging on.   Yellowjackets are after my lunch.

It happened overnight, it seems, this transition from sweltering hot to surprisingly cold.  I look forward to taking walks in the morning again, and am happy to be wearing socks.   Mosquitoes are diminishing. 

 I am getting ready for a big show at our house on the 13 and 20 October, to coincide with the Castagna (chestnut) festival.    I am trying to figure out how to leave doors open for light and air, but keep the heat inside.   I’d like to find a yurt (ger) I can set up in our dining room and live in it, here, for the winter.

We’re painting outside again, and yesterday we stood on the street to paint the circus tents in Vignola.  Everyone from the circus came and admired our work.  They asked us to be their guests at their performance, but we had a prior engagement at a show in Guiglia, part of an event there.   I refer to it as “The Gruel Festival”, but in fact, it’s the Sagra della Polenta, where you eat tasteless corn based slop covered with ragu or cheap cream, served in a plastic bowl with a plastic spoon (washed down with bubbly red wine: Lambrusco).  People here love it.   It makes me think of prison (but that would be gruel without topping), or something medieval, not totally inappropriate in the shadow of the 13th century castle in Guiglia.

I actually like polenta, prepared and served well, which is a rarity.  I prefer grits, the Southern US “polenta”.  Grits are made with white corn (hominy), as opposed to polenta, which is made with yellow corn.  Grits have a finer texture, and either grits or polenta can easily be made to resemble wallpaper paste.  One of my most memorable meals, eaten with my friend Vicki, in High Point, North Carolina was a Shrimp and Grits dish.  Those grits had the slightest crunchiness, the shrimp were perfectly cooked, served with a grinding of coarsely ground pepper.  I can still taste it.

I’d love to take all this Italian food like Mama used to make, and add fresh, new 21st century tastes.  Pizza with duck breast and cherries; a tuna and lemon frittata; polenta with shrimp and ground pepper.   Maybe next week.

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