In New Orleans all the birds dance at dawn and dusk. Take a look :)
In July's post titled, "A Seahorse Story", I wrote about seeing paintings I hadn't seen or thought of for a long time, after many many years. Well today I received an email from a Sergeant with the DC Metropolitan Police Department, who reminded me that he had in his private collection an original painting of two roses I had completed almost a decade ago.
Here's the image he sent:
Not to be outdone, I was on Skype with my bff in Norway, and she jumped up, ran downstairs, and came back to her computer holding a painting in front of the camera!! It was an Oil & Acrylic painting on canvas I had done of a sparrow. She kept it with her all these years, and said it has been following her around on her adventures, as she moved back and forth from the US and her homecountry of Norway. That little bird is quite the world traveler!
I'll try to get a picture of the bird, and will try to get Annie in the picture as well — because she's gorgeous!!!
In our last post I got to write about FREE BOOKS. As if that weren't enough of a treat, I now have the pleasure of writing about FREE ART!!!
To establish context, we'll start at the beginning of the story. A few days ago, some of you may have noticed we put up a small sign next to our mail slot:
Before you get up-in-arms over the kittens, let me say that we put food out for them. And we fully intend to spoil them with cat treats and donut beds. If there are no further objections....
I opened the door this morning, and instead of the expected cacophony of welcoming meows, I was delighted to see a piece of art!!!! At 5.5 x 7.75 inches, it featured a fleur-de-lis with sparkling stars and a green background, painted on wood and wrapped in cellophane.
How could one NOT fall in love with this!!!?!? As I turned it over, I noticed a wonderful note on the back. As a writer and language-lover, I'm partial to notes, especially when they are paired with small treasures that need looking after, like Paddington Bear or the baby in that 1980's movie Willow.
This note was especially dear, as it conveyed pitch-perfectly the joy of receiving art and also the power of art to unify people and communities.
New Orleans is famous for the pride its residents have in their city and culture, but an often overlooked aspect of this pride is the support and encouragement New Orleanians have for their fellow citizens. I love my little FREE-de-lis for many many reasons, one of which is that the inscription on the back captures how supportive and thoughtful the NOLA community is. Walking into the Gallery today to find it was like catching a shoe from Muses!
THANK YOU BILLY COUSINS!!!!!
There's always something going on in the Quarter, but on the slower days nothing beats a good book and an iced coffee. So in today's post we're highlighting TWO places to procure FREE BOOKS!! And they are both within TWO blocks of the Gallery!
The first is Arcadian Books, located at 714 Orleans Avenue (just across from the Bourbon Orleans hotel). I found this place while trying desperately to escape from Bourbon Street. Orleans Avenue is a quiet little strip that joins Bourbon and Royal Streets.
The free books are left on the front stoop. Don't forget to go in though, because you are in for a cluttery treat of literary proportions!! Books everywhere.
The second place carries less literature, but is no less literary for it. It's a gorgeous little coffee shop called Royal Blend, located in the alleyway just before The Court of Two Sisters. Sit in the shade of banana trees and sip your frozen coffee confection, all while taking in pearls of wisdom from your free book(s). The books at Royal Blend are actually, on average, fairly light fare. But escapist reading is definitely not a bad thing, and you might need a little Anne Rice after reading the Oxford Anthology of English Poetry you picked up at Arcadia Books.
Members of The Red Hat Society are in New Orleans for their convention this year, and we have seen some LOVELY hats! And some lovely ladies! Chloe was feeling a little left out, so we told her she could wear a red hat for the weekend and be an honorary member. We don't really have the authority to bestow that, but the red hat ladies who see her get so overwhelmed by her charm and grace that they forget to ask her for membership dues. Chloe gets away with everything!!
This year Chloe posed in front of the famous Cafe Du Monde, because she loves beignets and thinks they're one of the finest exports New Orleans has to offer. When Chloe meets a beignet, all thoughts of girlish figures go out the window and she becomes a crazed lunatic. In a good way.
Here's the painting (created just before Chloe turned around to gobble up all the beignets in sight). (Oil & Acrylic on Canvas, 14'' x 11'').
The picture is now in the Front Window.
She LOVES her new red hat, and it is now in her permanent collection next to her orange hat, which she posed with for the painting "Chloe in Her Bedroom", 4' by 4', Oil & Acrylic on Wood.
SO MANY THINGS going on in New Orleans this past weekend! First, we had the RED DRESS RUN on Saturday morning. The Gallery was right on the run route! (See pictures at the end of this post!)
And then of course, in the evening we had DIRTY LINEN NIGHT!!! We had so much fun, and drank SO MUCH RUM. We owe a HUGE thanks to Old New Orleans Rum, and especially to Kim, the events coordinator, and Gail, who tirelessly stuck with us through the ENTIRE night and served fabulous cocktails to the legions of rum lovers. We got tons of compliments on the drinks and are now saddled with the disappointing task of informing returning visitors that ONO Rum is not a regular offering at the Gallery. We also are indebted to our friend EJ at Printing ETC, who battled the traffic and red dress runners to gallantly deliver gorgeous bookmark business cards. We are ashamed to admit we only gave a day's notice on the order, so having them at the Gallery to distribute was no small feat. We're changing the name of Printing ETC in our computer address book to "Miracles by EJ".
At the end of the night, we were left with wonderful memories and ten empty rum bottles. We're not ones to let a good thing go to waste, so we decorated the bottles and made a new window display.
Red Dress Pics!
Dirty Linen Party Pics!
We got our party clothes on and are gearing up for tonight's festivities. Check back in tomorrow for pictures from the event!
As you can see on our drop-down sign, Old New Orleans Rum is graciously donating their expertise — they will be making cocktails and offering tastings all evening.
Birds, birds, birds. We can't get enough. New (bird, of course), paintings:
First we have a scribbly little beast full of color and movement.
Next we have a much, much LARGER critter, who looks remarkably similar. He is the third in my "Looseleaf" series. My Looseleaf Series is a collection of paintings I make to look like black and white sketches on notebook paper. I think it's nostalgic and fun to see "doodles" as big paintings.
This is the "sketch", isolated:
And to get an idea of the scale, here is a full-body shot. We are rearranging so these paintings are all lined up. Notice the little bird Scribbly on the left, with the bigger Notebook bird looming to his right.
I may paint some parrots now.
Tomorrow is a BIG DAY at GALLERY BURGUIERES!! We have our favorite Yoga Instructor (aside from Elizabeth Burguieres, of course) coming in to get everyone fantastically FEATHERED!!
You all know feathers are so hot right now. Alabama-native Abigail Brown, the queen of feather hair extensions and accessories, is coming to the Gallery to make sure no one is featherless at White Linen Night. So spend the afternoon on Royal, get your feather extensions and earrings to glam up your white linen dress, enjoy some of our brand-new birdie paintings (see previous post), and then head over to Julie Street for the White Linen Festivities! You'll be the best-looking bird in town.
With Chloe doing all the important stuff for the Gallery, I've had time to PAINT today! New Originals:
It's a bird kind of day.
Hi, my name is Ally Burguieres. When I'm done painting I update this blog with new paintings, events, and news!