WOWI

WOWI is an acronym for What Once Was Imagined, a reference to William Blake’s proverb ‘What is now proved was once only imagined’, and the title of a beautiful exhibition at the Royal College of General Practitioners. There are 28 exhibits and it opened on the 28th of November, William Blake’s birthday, but I don’t think that was part of the plan, just a happy and auspicious coincidence. Read more

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St Luke Blesses St Ives

We were blessed to be in St Ives when the period of clear sunshine and late, late, late summer, known as St Luke’s Little Summer broke over the town. Read more

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Patrick Heron

It was the dark limbo daze between Christmas and New Year, when the days melt namelessly into each other and the sun goes on holiday. So we went to the seaside, looking for some winter colour. The Patrick Heron exhibition at Turner Contemporary in Margate was just the ticket. Read more

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Maisha London June 2017

Jake Long (drums), Nubya Garcia (saxophone/flute), Shirley Tetteh (guitar), Amané Suganami (piano/wurlitzer), Twm Dylan (double bass) and Tim Doyle (percussion) stretching out at the Boiler Room in June 2017. They’ve gone from strength to strength, and in November 2018 they released their long-awaited first album, There Is A Place, a beautifully uplifting collection of songs that recalls the music of some of the pioneers of spiritual jazz. I hear echoes of Pharaoh Sanders, Alice Coltrane, Gato Barbieri and Don Cherry. I can’t stop playing it. It’s my record of the year – There Is A Place.

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Backwards To Go Forwards

I found this video on Boxing Day at a fascinating website I just discovered called Arbutus Yarns, a great treasure house of Irish music built by Myles O’Reilly and furnished with all the gorgeous first-hand unadulterated musical beauty he can find. I think I’ll be visiting him again – Arbutus Yarns.

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Parabelo: Grupo Corpo

Brazilian dance ensemble Grupo Corpo performing their 1997 piece Parabelo, choreographed by Rodrigo Pederneiras with music by Tom Zé and Zé Miguel Wisnik. “From working and devotional chants, from the memory of the rhythmic baião and from the exuberant and an ever present, entangled, rhythmic points and counterpoints, emerges choreography full of hip swaying and feet stamping. It’s a ravishing statement of maturity and of the expressive teachings, developed throughout many years, by the maker of Missa do Orfanato and Sete ou Oito Peças para um Ballet.”

Grupo Corpo | Parabelo

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Bach: Grupo Corpo

Brazilian dance ensemble Grupo Corpo performing their 1996 piece Bach, (“it’s like a game between what one hears and what one sees”), choreographed by Rodrigo Pederneiras with music by Marco Antônio Guimarães (channelling J.S.Bach).

Grupo Corpo | Bach

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Ama

A breathtaking short film by underwater freediving artist and director Julie Gautier.

“Ama is a silent film. It tells a story everyone can interpret in their own way, based on their own experience. There is no imposition, only suggestions. I wanted to share my biggest pain in this life with this film. For this is not too crude, I covered it with grace. To make it not too heavy, I plunged it into the water. I dedicate this film to all the women of the world.”

海の女 (ama) is the Japanese word for “woman of the sea,” which is also the name for Japan’s traditional shell collectors. The film is a metaphoric nod to these united women, while also representing the relationship that connects women from all over the world.

“For me, this film is a way to say: you are not alone,” said Gautier, “open yourself to others, talk about your sufferings and your joys.”

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Bach’s Cello Suite No. 6

Cello Suite no. 6 in D major, performed by Sergey Malov on a violoncello da spalla (shoulder cello) at the Gashouder of the Westergasfabriek in Amsterdam.

In this last suite, which is also the longest, Bach makes the instrument ascend to heaven. He does so by using an extra fifth string – ‘a cinq cordes’, as Anna Magdalena Bach described it in the manuscript. The fifth string lies a fifth above the A string, which is usually the highest. You might even argue that Bach allows the cellist to transcend their own instrument.

Recorded for All of Bach, a project by the Netherlands Bach Society.

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In The Bleak Midwinter


A bright window packed with small beauties for these dark days, a fast-moving festive feast for the eyes. As works sell they will be replaced by more in an ongoing ever-changing pageant of delights.  Read more

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