Sometimes I wonder how we ever did without computers and the World Wide Web. Anyone with the least bit of curiosity — and I seem to have more than a little — knows what treasures wait to be found with a simple click of a mouse. Over the last week, I've done some clicking and uncovered a few gems, and because it's Saturday again, my finds are now yours.
✭ Colorado artist Carol Nelson began a project on January 1 to paint 100 portraits in 100 days. She's received photos from all over the world. Take a look at her progress to date by going here. Anyone can send Nelson a photo. A quick review of her requirements is here. In addition to portraits, Nelson paints landscapes, still lifes and florals, and animals.
✭ Here is an insightful and fascinating article on the "real" MacBeth and his wife Gruoch.
✭ Fantastical creations can be found at Project Vortex, which describes itself as an "emerging" nonprofit organization "committed to salvaging and reusing non-biodegradable debris from oceans and shorelines. . . to transform garbage into works of art and design. . . ." The site is still under construction but images of participating artists' transformational works can be seen on the main page. The work is an example of often astonishing creativity and a praise-worthy initiative to clean up the earth we all mess up.
✭ You needn't leave the house to bring yourself up to date on contemporary art. Just turn on your computer and head for the Los Angeles County Museum of Art's "Reading Room", where you'll find electronic facsimiles of important museum publications, including exhibition catalogues for past and current shows.
✭ Do you like Accidental Mysteries? This blog, written by John Foster, ranges widely over art, architecture, photography, design, and lots of other stuff that Foster describes as "the magic of everyday things". Be sure to click over to Foster's Website of the same name, which offers a collection of "vernacular" photography—an "overlooked genre of folk art" likely to keep you entranced for a while.
✭ So maybe karoke is not your thing. It's not mine, either. But reading, writing, and speaking poetry: they're something else! And there's a place online where PoetrySpeaks. The site is organized into three main sections: Voices, featuring readings of classic and contemporary poetry; Spoken Word, which highlights "slam" poetry; and Your Mic, where you may upload your own poems, rate poetry performances, and participate in the online poetry community. Your Mic focuses on audio and video performances of poems; however, registered users may upload the text of poems. Click over to the PoetryMatters blog to get the lowdown on poets and poetry happenings, or visit the PoetryStore for Poetry You Can Hear collections. Poets take note: PoetrySpeaks has plans to create poet trading cards that poets may use to promote themselves and their work — a wonderful idea!