Sunday, July 20, 2014

SUNSHINE AND SADNESS



Whoever thought the humble pineapple would enjoy some sort of
 Design Renaissance?


When the Red Cardinals were married, we were gifted such 70s curiosities as a pineapple shaped serving bowl.
It came with tiny holes in its wooden leaves, for the display of cocktail toothpicks bearing a tiny cube of cheese, a pickled onion...perhaps even a pineapple wedge..


Here, displayed in all their retro glory, is a veritable cornucopia of pineapple creativity... part of "Harvest", the latest exhibition at our GoMA..


Without further comment, I give you:


Pineapple Fairy!!


Remember those gothic fairytales by Hans Christian Anderson?
This is an illustration from my childhood storybook, a book I read and re-read, loving the pretty heroines, and shivering at their tragedies...




Then there was the 1948 movie, starring ballerina Moira Shearer, with Australia's own Sir Robert Helpmann:



Occasionally turns up on cable, and I have a little look at its creepiness..


The other night I went to the world premiere season of new version of The Red Shoes by Queensland's Expressions Dance Company..

A modern, adult ballet version of the old fairytale, it draws out the gothic sub-texts of obsession, ambition and lust...


As the heroine, possessed by the magical red shoes, dances to her death, she is transported through the dark forest - cleverly constructed by layers of film footage projected across the stage.  Brilliant..


On Friday, the Wild Westerly Winds blew down this large tree, across the path where I walk.
It is still there, a symbol of that awful tragedy in the Ukraine, where a Malaysian civilian plane was brought down in unspeakable horror.
Thirty-six Australians lost their lives, along with hundred from other nations.
Seven of them were Queenslanders.
It breaks our collective heart. 
 May they rest in peace, and the perpetrators be brought to justice.


At my choir rehearsal Friday morning, we deviated from our schedule to sing this American Spiritual: Down by the Riverside - [Ain't gonna study war no more]


It seemed right.


Blessings  xxx







37 comments:

  1. I feel for everybody who lost a loved one on that plane and it actually was the starting point of my post today. I really wonder if the culprits will be brought to justice though; I am pessimistic !

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    1. Unfortunately, I also don't have very high hopes that this will end in any way satisfactorily resolved. So, so sad for the families left behind.

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  2. Connected ponderings make for the best blogs Patricia.....the horror of the plane crash is just too awful to contemplate.....what on earth causes people to have such little regard for the beauty of life ?

    I do love the pineapples though..... I have a large plastic one that used to be an ice bucket back in the 70s.....it is now a sweetie jar for the grandchildren.

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    1. It was a tiny challenge, how to discuss this awful event, yet maintain the blog's mission of looking on the bright side. Once again, today, more shuddering here, at the escalating problems in Ukraine.
      Love the sound of the pineapple ice bucket - I'm sure it would have found a place in the gallery display. All the items were donated by careful hoarders who still had these things at home :)

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  3. I'll know pineapples have really come back when I start seeing knitted patterns for them. :-)

    The ballet sounds like it was very interesting and different. I'm glad you enjoyed it.

    The Malaysian Airlines tragedy is unbelievable. The news has been filled with such horrible things this week, most of them involving one group of people hurting another group of people. It leaves me with a helpless feeling, and sometimes I just have to stop reading the news headlines for a few days.

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    1. A knitted pineapple? There would be a market for that, I've no doubt. Maybe you could design it. Yes, unbelievable about the Malaysian airlines, and so desperately sad for the families. One Australian couple lost all three of their children, who were travelling with grandparents - just awful.

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  4. The airline tragedy is horrid and the news of the way the aftermath is being handled just makes it worse. Sometimes I despair of humanity.

    Haven't noticed the return of pineapples but I do have some old doilies like the one you showed. Pineapples were a sign of hospitality at one point in history I think. Found as decorations on many homes and gates. I will get my old doilies out and be right in style.

    Darla

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    1. The aftermath is a nightmare, Darla. I share your despair of humanity. I had pineapple crotchet too, for years, but they seem to have left the building. You will be totally in style if you pineapple up your house!

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  5. Ha Ha I remember those pineapples - we were married 44 years ago - we weren't as lucky as you Patricia as we didn't receive one as a wedding present!!!!
    My Brisbane friend told me recently how wonderful the Queensland Ballet is under Li Cunxin's direction. It seems Brisbane has grown as a centre of wonderful culture.
    Wishing you are happy time in Canada with your grandchildren!
    Hugs
    Shane

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    1. Ah, it must have been a Queensland thing, back in the day, Shane. Yes, the Queensland Ballet is doing wonders under Li Cunxin, and I was disappointed I missed their recent Romeo and Juliet (we were in Canberra). Critics said it was their best ever production, high praise indeed. I'll make sure I go to his next one, as he is so good perhaps his tenure will be short and he will go on to higher things.
      Not going to Canada this time; off to Paris and Italy :)

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  6. It was a terrible tragedy. I was especially sad to hear about the AIDS researchers who died. What a terrible loss. I remember the Red Shoes, I think the movie was on TV when I was a kid too. I love all that pineapple stuff, it's so kitchsy but fun and cute!

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    1. A terrible loss, Jennifer, so many talented people gone, including some of Australia's finest.
      Pineapples rule - I think I'd like that pineapple hat in the first pic!

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  7. Such a useless waste of life and so tragic! The winds were very hairy weren't they. Would you believe Trish that I still havethe same little pineapple jug under the fairy. Lol!

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    1. Well done, for having the foresight to preserve your pineapple jug, Michelle!

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  8. The Red Shoes is a really creepy film in a good way! xxx

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    1. Yes, that it! Creepy in a good way ... xxx

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  9. What an interesting pineappple exhibition. I see a pineapple pattern doily similar to ones I have. I can hardly bear watching the news footage of the plane crash -- the way they are handling the body removal with such DISRESPECT. Putin needs to step up to the plate NOW. The entire world is sickened what has happened here.

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    1. Ah, you too have the pineapple doily - they were quite the thing in the world of crotchet. I made a huge one, back in the 70s :)
      Yes, unbearable watching the TV or reading the newspaper: it just goes on and on, more disrespect each day. I am glad our Prime Minister spent 30 minutes on the phone to Putin, and hopefully got the message through.

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  10. Sadly I have to confess that the pineapple thing and the ballet Red Shoes don´t ring any bells for me. Maybe the pineapple was and still is too exotic in our part of the world.
    The modern version of the ballet would have been interesting to see.
    Speaking of the latest Ukraine tragedy, I guess we don´t have to wonder who was behind it.
    And later on, P was giving statements and expressed his disgust on the tragic event!
    I don´t trust that man at all. Feeling very uncomfortable living in a country right next to his.
    There just is too much fighting, wars and despair right now.
    How much can we take?

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    1. Dear Mette in the land of ice and snow: yes, pineapples are probably too tropical for Finland. I can understand you feeling a bit uncomfortable living next to Russia just now. Past history was not so good, and I fear we are going back to Cold War days. Let us hope world pressure sorts things out with the Ukraine tragedy.

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  11. Patricia you know how I feel about the airline tragedy...but on a brighter note I hope that version of The Red shoes comes to Sydney soon!

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    1. I know you like ballet too, Val, and The Red Shoes is an interesting production, worth a look. Does the Expressions Co. go to Sydney? Meantime, I can't get tickets to the Qld. Ballet's Christmas production of the Nutcracker - booked out already. Did you watch Australia Story last night re Li Cuxcin? Excellent viewing..

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  12. Patricia,
    The Pineapple fairy is delightful. You know, I absolutely love fairies, so this caught my eye right away. And I am lovin' that pineapple hat too!

    Have a blessed week, my dear.

    love,
    ~Sheri

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    1. Dear Sheri, I knew somebody out there loved fairies, and it was you!
      Pineapple hat is chic, non?
      Blessings x

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  13. Pineapples to me somehow evoke the 1940s, I think there might have been a fashion for them - the hats!!!!

    It is hard to know how to deal with the terrible tragedy of the airliner and all the people on it. So many conflicting feelings. Sometimes singing something appropriate with others really is the best way.

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    1. I see what you mean, Jenny. Perhaps thinking of the fashions of Carmen Miranda from back in those days.
      A week later, the airliner tragedy still dominates the news, but at last some steps in the right direction. I hope we sing our spiritual again this week.

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  14. Another wonderful and eclectic post, Patricia. I loved the pineapple displays. How creative! I've never seen that before. How sad about the tree too.It does seem symbolic. I'm very glad you just say 'the perpetrators'. I'm afraid anger is making people give 'judgement before the trial' here and the accusations and recommendations of what to do with those already convicted in people's minds are as violent and awful as the death of those on board. The majority of those were Dutch, but as you rightly say many from across the globe perished in an act of war they had nothing to do with. More than tragic. Singing is a beautiful response, especially a song like Down by the Riverside.

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    1. Thank you Val, the pineapples are indeed creative. Visitors to the gallery do seem to enjoy the fun and the nostalgia. I am desperately sad for the Netherlands who had such terrible losses in the airline tragedy. I watched the King and Queen at the reception for the first victims to arrive. It was so dignified and caring, and with a respectful procession. Sadly, in a war zone, such things do not seem possible. Singing can be incredibly heartfelt in these situations. Thank you for your lovely comment.

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  15. A very thoughtful and enjoyable post, Patricia. DH and I married before the pineapple craze, but the exhibition looks like great fun. I love ballet and remember seeing The Red Shoes on TV many years ago, so I'm sure i would love the modern version you saw.

    Being in France without TV all the coverage I've seen of the MH17 airliner tragedy has been on internet news sites, which somehow distances the impact, I'm afraid. What with that and the Gaza situation, as well as all the other conflicts, the world seems full of war and suffering.

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    1. Thank you Perpetua. The 'food art' exhibition is fun, and pineapples turn up in surprising contexts. Yes, so much war and suffering and it seems finding a safe flight path across the middle east is becoming a problem. So sad for the families who wait..

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  16. Hello Patricia

    I love your display and yes Hans Christian Anderson books and illustrations bring fond memories. Sorry you lost that fine tree.
    My prayers are for peace and and end to war.
    Thanks for visiting and your comments

    Helen xx

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    1. Hello Helen, My Peace rose has had its first bloom. Let us hope it is a sign of peace to come.
      Fond memories of the HCA stories!
      Thank you for commenting. xx

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  18. I really really now have to check out the Pineapple fairy and the Red Shoes, mainly for the illustrations which although I loved them when I was younger I didn't appreciate them as I would now.
    What a sad sight, that poor tree but even more the sadness and horror of the evil things which are happening.
    Hugs Suzy x

    This is now the 3rd time I've tried to leave this comment.....fingers crossed ;)

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    1. Hi Suzy, Thank you for persevering with your comment - Blogger is a mystery to me at times. The Pineapple fairy looks very tropical, which is strange as I always think of fairies in an English context.
      The horror continues...so sad. xxx

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  19. Your pineapple serving dish sounds like fun. We have muted pineapple wallpaper in the kitchen that DH remains very fond of and a framed pierced tin pineapple in our entryway. It was viewed as a symbol of welcome here, although the actual ones travel from Mexico or Hawaii to our cold climate.

    A number of flags at half mast here out of respect for what happened over the Ukraine. Innocent people traveling somewhere else, and I found the last posted pictures so many of them took in the airport so very sad. Prayers for their families.

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    1. Ooo, muted pineapple wallpaper sounds good. You might notice in my photos there is an elaborate wallpaper in pineapple design behind the display. It was commissioned specially by the gallery, as part of the Exhibition. Definitely a sign of welcome and hospitality.
      So many suffering families, it is all very sad. It also makes the idea of long-distance flying just a little more serious than before.

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