Up To Pigra

001

Next day we took the cable car up Monte Pasquella, from Argegno to Pigra. It’s called a funivia, which translates as a ropeway (not funny street) rather than a funicolare which runs along tracks. Cable cars can be a bit more bouncy than funiculars! Read more

Frames of reference

Down To Argegno

001

We were staying for two weeks in a chalet overlooking Lake Como, with spectacular views across the lake to Monte San Primo. This is the top of our street, Via Cacciatori Delle Alpi, but here called Via San Sisinio. As we walked I took photos at regular intervals all the way down the hill. Read more

Frames of reference

Away With The Birds

Hanna Tuulikki’s ‘Air falbh leis na h-eòin’ is a body of work exploring the mimesis of birds in Gaelic song. On the 29th and 30th of August it becomes a sited performance on the Isle of Canna.

Hanna’s vocal composition, ‘Guth an Eòin | Voice of the Bird’ is the heart of the project. Written for a female vocal ensemble, it reinterprets archival material, fragmenting and re-weaving extracts of Gaelic songs into an extended soundscape. The music emerges from, and responds to, island landscapes and lives. It explores the delicate equilibrium of Hebridean life, the co-existence of tradition and innovation, and suggests the ever-present inter-relationship between bird, human, and ecology.

“The piece is made from weaving together fragments of traditional songs and poems that imitate or emulate birdsong” Tuulikki explains. “Each of the five movements represents a different habitat and bird community – wader, sea-bird, wildfowl, corvid, and cuckoo. In August we will perform the concert in the historic harbour of the beautiful Isle of Canna, where the music reverberates with the bird-calls and the ebb of the tide. The setting is so important to the piece. The Small Isles are a magical place and, to me, the performance begins as soon as people climb on-board the ferry-boat to make the crossing: the richness of the experience is people sharing a journey.”

www.awaywiththebirds.co.uk

Frames of reference

Greetings From Darktown

greetings from darktown

Here’s a welcome poster from Jonny Hannah, a timely reminder that the end is nigh, not long to wait now until the publication of his eagerly awaited book, Greetings from Darktown. It promises to be a rich treasury of many and various eye-catching mementos and proclamations. Read more

Frames of reference

Paco de Lucía

I’m out of the frame for a while. Whilst I’m away I’m leaving Paco in charge. This is some of the most suprising and exciting music ever invented. It’s diverting and engaging and definitely worth a look. He begins solo, then he’s joined by cajón, fingersnaps and handclaps, then voices and eventually a whole band of virtuosos, including a great flamenco dancer. The concert culminates in a dynamic duet finale with Al Di Meola. ¡Olé!

Frames of reference

The Sky At Snape

001

SNAP HQ, a cor-ten steel shed at Snape Maltings, nerve centre of the SNAP visual arts programme for this year’s Aldeburgh Festival, directing our gaze towards the great Suffolk sky. Read more

Frames of reference

The Gown Of Green

The Gown of Green is a song by The Collection from their album Ars Moriendi. This video comes via NPR Music. I first heard of them from Bill at Practicing Resurrection, his blog from White Flint Farm, a good place to wander and always full of wise words.

Frames of reference

Sgwd Yr Eira

I just found this lovely little video from Dominick Tyler of Sgwd Yr Eira in the Brecon Beacons. It translates as Fall of Snow and it reminds me of a delightful wood engraving by Howard Phipps. Read more

Frames of reference

Wells & Mells

001

Cathedral Green at Wells, the eternal stone partnered with an inflated upstart. We arrived just in time for the Somerset Schools Folk Dance Festival, a ceilidh for more than 2,000 primary school children, all stepping and skipping and turning circles on the green. Read more

Frames of reference

Beetle, Crayfish & Mussel

Tansy Beetle

Two new prints just arrived from Beatrice Forshall, both drypoints printed from multiple plates in small editions and hand-coloured, which means they’re short-lived and not designed for mass production. It’s a form that suits the content, since these are images of endangered species. This tansy beetle is just a detail, for the complete picture, and Bea’s thoughts on the subject, please see below. Read more

Frames of reference