Monday, September 28, 2009

Zimbabwean Sculptures (+flowers, birds and beasts)

In my last post, I mentioned dropping by VanDusen Botanical Gardens on Saturday. A lady had told me about the Zimbabwean Sculpture Exhibition, and as Bill and I pondered a plan for the day, I suddenly remembered her words. I was glad I did. The exhibition ends October 4th. If you are anywhere close to Vancouver, and have the time, I believe you will find it memorable, especially if you choose a day with beautiful weather to add to the pleasure.

There is quite a bit of information on line about the exhibit and the various artists. I even found a blog post on the subject!

Bill spent quite some time going through my photographs, and chose three for the blog post. I'm sorry to have missed the title and name of the artist for this one, but love the lines flowing skyward, and also the expressions.
This one is called "Mischievous Boys" and the artist is Jonathan Mhondorohuma.
"Deep in Thought" by Stoney Mutengwe
There are about 200 artists represented in the exhibit. Two of them can be seen working on site. I spent a few moments talking with Passmore Mupindiko. He was working on a beautiful sculpture of a Guinea Fowl. Those few moments had quite an impact. If ever I can find a little extra cash (okay, for me, quite a bit of extra cash), I will be looking him up. You can see a video with him and Patrick Sephani talking about their work and explaining the various types of stone used. I also enjoyed this article in the Vancouver Sun, highlighting the two artists.
VanDusen Gardens was magnificent on Saturday. Bill and I were mesmerized by this rainbow that appeared and disappeared and magically transformed, depending on the wind direction and sun filtering through the water fountain. I tried and tried to capture it in a photo; this was my best effort. I don't know if it would appear quite frequently, or if nature and man just happened to synchronize on Saturday for our pleasure.
Bill especially enjoyed the water lilies.
Here, Bill holds up a flower that would normally face down. I didn't capture its full essence, but caught Bill's quite well, I thought.
These red flowers are Amaranth. I thought they went beautifully with Bill's shirt, but he limited me to only one picture of him.
Whoops. This sunflower was not part of the exhibit. We saw it later the same day, all by itself, in a marshy area of Jericho Park.
Back to VanDusen. I did not catch the names of most of the flowers, but loved this one.
And now, back to Jericho. Just a little bird, unidentified.
A blue heron opened its wings for a short flight across the pond.
The landing.
With fall colors reflected in the water, the heron had the perfect background to highlight its elegance.
Last year, I had a lot of fun with autumn colors. This year, I have wondered if the dry summer would affect the leaf shades and/or the length of time the colors remain vibrant, so there's a feeling of wanting to capture the beauty while I can.
We met Shanti at Jericho. He was chasing a soft frisbee, and I took a zillion photos, struggling to capture the essence of "Peace" of this totally happy dog. His humans, recently moved to Vancouver from Calgary, were very friendly, and told me Shanti's diet is completely vegetarian, and very carefully hand-cooked for maximum nutrition.

I have come to the end of Bill's photo selections. These last ones are a few random ones, taken between the 23rd and the 26th. They come partly as a Rose update, and partly to represent a couple of highlights last week.

I haven't spent much time checking out the nest, and the lookout by my school. Mostly, just five or ten-minute visits before I head home in the afternoon. This is taken with my small camera, but gives a fairly good overview of the area, with the nest on the pylon at the right, front corner, and the barge at the far right. Often, it is completely deserted, with barely a seal in sight, and no sign of ospreys. I did see quite a few seals yesterday, though, so they haven't left yet. I have no idea where they go for the winter. Looking down at the rocks beneath the water at high tide.
The last time I saw Rose (at least I feel fairly sure this is Rose) was on Wednesday, the 23rd. She flew from the barge to this mast.
Here she is, at the right, on the barge. There is a heron at the left. I'm not sure what bird is in the center.
A rather beautiful crow, I think.
The seagulls have become quite bold, stealing old scraps from the osprey nest.
I spent some time on Friday evening watching the beavers. Here, one chews on a thick branch.
It was almost dark, and I was surprised my camera picked up some fairly clear shots with the flash.
As is often the case, we were being observed as well. There were three of us enjoying the beavers - a lady photographer, and a man named Greg, who stops by quite regularly.
The temperatures are getting much cooler in the evenings, and the ducks often hide their heads. I guess that's a way of keeping a bit warmer.
This last photo was taken Friday evening, the 25th, in Stanley Park, on my way home from school. I liked the shiny beads of water that showed up on the swan's head and neck.
Thanks to Bill for working tirelessly on Sunday to help with a very frustrating printer problem, and most especially, for taking time to go through my photos. His comments and suggestions are always so appreciated. And, as always, thanks to anyone who takes time to stop by and share in my days.


  1. I think that's your best effort yet on a crow! Does your photo program have a "fill light" option? (we use Picassa, and would be able to add just a little more definition to his feathers...)
    Love the brick red flowers!

  2. Great pics!
    All crows are beautiful. You should see the crows out here, well, maybe they're ravens I dont know, but they are the size of Eagles! lol
    I like the shot of the fall leaves too. I hope to see lots more fall pictures of Vancouver for me. Autumn is the best time of the year and I need updates from the west! haha

  3. Thanks EvenSong and Nev. Great to hear from you:)

    No, EvenSong, I haven't seen a "fill light" option, but haven't tried using Picassa. Thanks for the tip. Glad you liked the crow and the flowers.

    Nev, it's a deal. I'll be looking for updates from the East. I always think there are more reds in the mix than here, and you sure caught some beauties last year. I'm already enjoying your Hallowe'en preparations for this year. Your passion for the season is absolutely unmatched!