ArtSmart Roundtable: The Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood

ArtSmart Roundtable: The Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood

The former gallery guide in me couldn’t resist a regular appointment to chat about art so I’ve joined the ArtSmart Roundtable, a group of travel bloggers with a contagious passion for art. On the first Monday of every month, each member of the Roundtable publishes a piece on a chosen topic. This month’s topic is […]

03.09.2012 · Filled under: Art, ArtSmart Roundtable, Europe · Tags: , , · 6 Comments »
Key West for culture trippers

Key West for culture trippers

Like Alice passing through the looking-glass, I entered the Florida Keys through a dissolving veil of rain. The summer squall cleared as fast as it had blown in and I spent several sunny days exploring Key West’s unique architecture and thriving arts scene. There’s always something raffish about a port town. With its strange past […]

Santa Fe for culture trippers

Santa Fe for culture trippers

There’s a kind of hush over Santa Fe, New Mexico, a hush quite remarkable for a UNESCO Creative City and the third-largest art market in the U.S. (after New York and Los Angeles). Located at the foot of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains at an elevation of 7,000 feet, the color and beauty of New Mexico’s […]

29.06.2012 · Filled under: Architecture, Art, Destination Guides, New Mexico · Tags: , · 8 Comments »
Canucks, inukshuks and Cuba

Canucks, inukshuks and Cuba

Waves crash, palms blow, vultures wheel, clouds unspool. Here on the Costa Morena, the rugged coast west of Santiago de Cuba, all nature salsas in the wind. Flopped under a seagrape, sunburnt, pants torn, I suddenly get Van Gogh. Vincent never made it to Cuba but he would have known how to paint it: all […]

24.03.2012 · Filled under: Art, Cuba, Legendary Landscapes · Tags: , · 3 Comments »
Are you a right-brained traveler?

Are you a right-brained traveler?

I didn’t spend a lot of time thinking about being lefthanded while growing up. Raised in a house full of righthanders, I simply adapted to  unfriendly can openers and blister-causing scissors and got on with life. Life as a lefty, though, meant drawing a certain amount of flack. And flack is fuel for stubborn individualism. For […]

20.02.2012 · Filled under: Art, Lefthandedness, Myths & Legends · Tags: , · 4 Comments »
On a carousel in North Tonawanda, New York

On a carousel in North Tonawanda, New York

“Sure!” she replied and pointed to one of the larger and wilder-looking outer horses.  “Climb onto Big Billy there.” The crazed-looking stallion creaked as I swung my leg over his saddle and I instantly regretted the second beef on weck—a Buffalo area specialty—I’d polished off at lunch. But no time to reconsider.  The attendant hit […]

16.01.2012 · Filled under: Art, New York · Tags: , , · 4 Comments »
Al fresco art: Toronto Outdoor Art Exhibition

Al fresco art: Toronto Outdoor Art Exhibition

I always meet the most interesting people at the Toronto Outdoor Art Exhibition.  Fewer exhibitors this year, surprising since it’s the event’s 50th anniversary but half of Nathan Phillips Square being fenced off for construction may have had something to do with that.  As always, though, quality at this juried show was high. The TOAE […]

09.07.2011 · Filled under: Art, Canada, Festivals & Events · Tags: , · No Comments »
Why I’m toasting Russia’s Last Grand Duchess today

Why I’m toasting Russia’s Last Grand Duchess today

In Toronto’s North York cemetery, not far from the grave of hockey and coffee legend Tim Horton, “The Last Grand Duchess of Russia” lies beneath an Eastern Orthodox cross as white as a Russian winter. In this city of immigrant tales, the story of Her Imperial Highness Grand Duchess Olga of Russia is one of […]

14.06.2011 · Filled under: Art, Canada, Spirituality · Tags: , , · No Comments »
Messy lives, messy art: Abstract Expressionism New York at AGO

Messy lives, messy art: Abstract Expressionism New York at AGO

Tumultuous relationships, alcoholism, suicide.  For the Abstract Expressionists, messy lives made for messy art.  Sixty years later, their paintings still vibrate with the tragedy, passion and questing spirit that created them more than half a century ago. Several days after attending a media preview at the Art Gallery of Ontario, I’m still thinking about the show. Abstract Expressionist New York: Masterpieces from The Museum of […]

31.05.2011 · Filled under: Art · Tags: · No Comments »
Amsterdam for culture trippers

Amsterdam for culture trippers

Amsterdam charms with history, her lovely canals lined with houses that resemble gingerbread cookies piped with white icing.  And with more museums per square kilometer than any place else on earth, it would be easy to imagine the city as an open-air museum of Holland’s Golden Age.  But the spirit of adventure, tolerance and freedom that built […]

20.04.2011 · Filled under: Art, Destination Guides, Europe, Netherlands · Tags: , , · 5 Comments »
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