soul food

Oct. 14th, 2006 11:23 pm
escapewindow: escape window (escape(window) typewriter)

sf open studios weekend 2

... missed the first weekend due to a case of clueless. But I'll be hitting the next two.

I walked around the city all afternoon, stopping by five or six open studios... two of them housed multiple artists, so I probably viewed more than twenty artists' work.

Marcia Teusink: I loved her Submerged pieces, especially the Wreck at Pomonte series. All blue and really gave the feeling of being underwater.

1890 Bryant was a treasure trove of amazing artwork. This one stop alone was worth the trouble of traipsing all over the city...

I loved Peggy Gyulai's work; her paintings speak to me in the way certain paintings do, that make them a pleasure to look at and contemplate for hours. One was a nearly doorway-sized piece of canvas with a waterfall cascading down it; I coveted it, but it was ever so slightly out of my price range. Her paintings are inspired by pieces of music, which is perhaps one reason why they seem alive.

Tessa Merrie's compositions are about natural objects, but to me they speak of separation and isolation in a way I like.

Upstairs from them, Wendy L Miller has a number of paintings, but the series that caught my eye were her books. She picks up old books solely for their title and cover, sews up the pages so no one can read them, then paints both covers in a way that suits the title.

... and there was plenty of other great art there too, some of it even affordable. I couldn't figure out if working there would be more inspiring or intimidating.

I happened to stop in Carole Moore's studio (saw the sign on my way elsewhere). She has beautiful koi paintings, including one huge koi spread out over six or seven canvases of different shapes and sizes. But my favorite was this one (I think) for the texture.

... Yes, I did notice that all my favorite artists today were female. And some of them were cute. (In fact, there were a lot of cute girls at the open studios. Hunh.) I don't think that tinged my opinion of the art, especially since I liked some of their art before I ever met them. ...But I figure it can't hurt their art sales.

Anyway, yesterday I was all jaded, pizza and xbox til late. Today I'm inspired, sushi and art...


Blowfish Sushi

I've never eaten here before, but it was a block away from 1890 Bryant, so I stopped in after the studios closed. Trendy? Yeah. But their ambience and presentation were as good or better than any other sushi joint I've been to.

sashimi dinner
they delivered my sashimi sampler on a bed of dry ice.
"here's a touch of vegas for you," said my waiter.

They charged for my tea and miso, I had some yummy not-so-alcoholic sake with my meal, and I went for the raspberry cabernet sorbet afterwards, so my dinner came to about twice what I normally spend on sushi. But their ambience: excellent. Tea: excellent. Sake selection: I'm not that up on sake, but it seemed really good. Miso: good, not the best I've had. Fish: I usually judge by the sake (salmon) and maguro, which were good but not amazing. But the other fish, which I usually like ok, was really delicious, so it all evened out. Wasabi was the mildest I've ever tasted.

The somewhat clueless couple next to me at the bar had the waiter choose their dishes for them, and he was bringing out some funky- (but tasty-) looking stuff. I know I'm going back, sooner rather than later... gotta try some of that.

Perfect sushi joint? Not sure they exist. But this one's certainly piqued my interest.

escapewindow: escape window (escape window)

[prologue]: A month and a half in this city and I'm already noticeably more liberal. Mainly due to the excellent theaters and several important films.

Quick tangent: AOL is considering free service for broadband users, yet another milestone in the long, slow death of the internet giant. The AOL/Time Warner merger could have been important, but they weren't forward thinking enough. Time Warner had enough traditional media outlets that creating an internet market for content would have been self-defeating in the short term. Fast forward to today: Napster's death left a void, and Apple has taken over where AOL could have dominated; Microsoft is making noises about an iTunes/iPod killer in the works. And AOL is still dying its lingering death.

The automobile and oil companies are making a similar short-sighted decision. (see: Gore movie reaching the red states, too and the rest of this damn long winded post.)


[i: wherein our hero measures the boot of a small car and eats sushi]:

I put on my robe and wizard hat )



[quatro: photos]:

Afterwards I walked back home. Took some more photos. Lingered around Japantown, which was mostly closed... I should go back there soon. I want to wander around North Beach sometime soon too. Getting to know SF one photo walk at a time.

six peektures )
escapewindow: escape window (Default)

First we went to see the Cornelia Parker installations at YBCA... Mass and Anti-Mass. Charred remains of a white church in Texas that was struck by lightning, and the charred remains of a black church in Kentucky that was destroyed by arson, arranged in opposing corners of a room. Visually intriguing with a deeper layer of meaning to wrap your head around.


Then Corteo. I had purchased the Tapis Rouge tix (on a whim, as a gift), and the vip treatment started with reserved parking by the entrance. We had arrived quite a bit early, so we spent forty-five minutes or so in the Tapis Rouge hospitality tent.

Vip hospitality tent: Ambient lighting. Velvet [inflatable] couches. Free flowing champagne (or wine or choice of other beverage). The hors d'oeuvres were quite tasty: veggie Vietnamese spring rolls, handmade chips with salsa fresca and guacamole toppings, sausagey things for the meat eaters, and a few other bite-sized things that I couldn't describe for the life of me, which were also quite tasty. Our own bathrooms, free of the stench of common people. ;-) ... And free programs on our way to the show.

Then, during intermission, they changed up the hors d'oeuvres to more dessert-y bits... apple turnover bites, mini eclairs, and other indescribable-but-tasty bite-sized things. More free flowing champagne. And a little gift bag with a Cirque Delirium cd and some stuff from Porsche including a free test drive... heh.

The show:

corteo
Corteo, pre-show.
They had an Italian art type translucent curtain around the stage, which stretched the length of the tent.
The show began with aerial acrobatics on the chandeliers.

+1 )

Our seats were about seven rows from the stage... pretty great seats. Corteo featured lots of aerial acrobatics and lots of circles and rings... surefire ways to my heart.

Spoilers for those who don't want to know anything prior to seeing the show. )

All in all, I think Corteo ranks up there with Ká as one of my favorite Cirques... top 3 out of the 10 or so I've seen. Highly recommended. Go see!

On our way out, we walked through the commoners' tent, with its popcorn and plastic bottled drinks for sale, programs and cds for sale (like $17 and $20?), bright lights and huge crowd, and I thought, damn I'm a spoiled fucker.

(My parents were really happy with their birthday presents though =D ... )


Afterwards we ate sushi... had fun watching my parents talk to the chef and choose the best stuff to eat. It was pretty good. I asked to tag along to their favorite sushi place in Little Tokyo in LA. And sounds like we might go to Nobu in Vegas this Giftmas... my current personal favorite.

Then we wandered around the Giftmas lights in Union Square for a bit and stopped in the Westin St Francis for a pee.

gingerbread village )

They had a gingerbread castle on display there... 70 pounds of gingerbread, 300 pounds of icing... just amazing. My camera and/or computer ate the picture of the actual castle that I took. Bit annoyed at that.


Trying to decide whether to continue the day with some stomping. Maybe I'll just watch some Aqua Teen Hunger Force before bed and foray back into clubland [after a long hiatus] next week.

Damn this was a good day.

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