San Diego

Spent a week and a half with an old friend in San Diego, while her husband was up in Yosemite backpacking with “the guys”.  I was there for a redecoration project, but we also did some fun things.  Saw a great play in the Globe Theater’s theater-in-the-round.

God of Carnage

God of Carnage is about two pairs of parents, one of whose child has hurt the other at a public park, who meet to discuss the matter in a civilized manner. However, as the evening goes on, the parents become increasingly childish, resulting in the evening devolving into chaos. The play was a success in its original language, French, and has been equally acclaimed in its other English-translated productions in both London and New York.

I recall seeing another play by the same author, Yasmina Reza, perhaps at the Arizona Theater Company.

“Art,” Yasmina Reza’s Tony Award-winning play, begins with a $40,000 painting, an abstract white-on-white canvas. Serge buys this pricey work. His friends Marc and Yvan respond differently to his midlife-crisis splurge, turning this comedic drama into a reflection on male friendships.

The Beach

Saturday morning did L’s standard walk on the beach under foggy skies. There were a few whimbrels along the shore, gulls on the rooftops.  The new craze is paddle boarding, but there were hardly any waves.

San Diego Museum of Art

Saturday afternoon L and I went to the San Diego Museum of Art to see The Invention of Glory – Afonso V and the Pastrana Tapestries.

 Woven in the late 1400s, these monumental tapestries, each measuring 12 by 36 feet, depict Afonso V’s conquest in 1471 of the Moroccan cities of Asilah and Tangier, located near the entrance to the Strait of Gibraltar.

There was also a rather weird exhibit, Imagined as the Truth, Works by Yinka Shonibare.

For the past two decades, British-born, Nigeria-raised Yinka Shonibare MBE has created works that explore historical fictions and deconstruct Eurocentric myths with wit and subtle irony.

Note: MBE = Most Excellent Order of the British Empire.

My photo here of Shonibare’s La Medusé based on the famous painting after the ship ran aground, The Raft of the Medusa (shown here), which is in the Louvre.

But especially fascinating was his film:

…the Addio del Passato (“so closes my sad story”) in which the character of Frances Nisbet, Lord Nelson’s estranged wife [played by a back woman], sings the eponymous aria from the last act of Verdi’s opera [La Traviata.  Included in the film are] Fake Death Pictures in which Shonibare imagines a dramatized vision of the tragic event of Nelson’s death as played out over a series of photographic allegories based on classic scenes in paintings.

Love Nelson’s outfits made of richly patterned Dutch wax fabric influenced by Indonesian batiks.  (When these textiles failed to sell in Indonesia, they were later sold to the Africans where they became exceedingly popular, and which they are now commonly associated with today.)  Click on the pictures to see the details.

Lunch in Balboa Park at the Prado, which is thoroughly decorated.

To be continued…

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