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Archive for February, 2009


Thursday, February 19th, 2009

At this rate, I am going to need a vacation from my vacation. Yesterday was a very full day. We drove to Oceanside and San Diego to see the Quilt Visions 2008 show and the show at the Quilt Visions Gallery. Today, we spent the better part of the day at the Twentynine Palms Marine Base. More on that later. I was able to turn the tour into an artistic adventure!!

Where to start about the quilts I saw yesterday! Here is a photo of the Oceanside Art Museum where the Quilt Visions show is hanging. You can see that it was a beautiful day.


Some of the quilts were very familiar. I knew the maker before I looked at the card: Jette Clover, Linda Colsh, Katie Pasquini Masopust, Valerie Goodwin, Joan Schulze and Regina Benson. Sorry, no photography!!

Of the 41 quilts, my favorites were by Shulamit Liss, from Israel — Almost Summer, Patty Hawkins from Colorado — Aspen Solace and Karin Franzen from Alaska — Pirouette 4. I think I liked these because the way the fabric was used to create layers and complexity. I could not find  a link to Shulamit’s piece and she does not have a website. Patty has a website, but I could not find the Vision’s quilt!! It looks as if she used indigo shibori for the trees which I have done and I had not seen it in her work before. I have been a fan of her work for a long time. Karin has a website and a photo of her Visions quilt so finally, I can show you a quilt that I loved. She used silk organza, used cothing and a variety of other fabrics with discharge, syeing, silk screening, paint and oil pastels. It was raw edge appliqued.

We had lunch at the marina in Oceanside – fish tacos!! Then we drove down to San Diego to the new Quilt Visions Gallery which is located in a beautiful old building that used to be part of the Naval Training Center. Many of these old buildings are being repurposed for arts organizations and other non-profits. These photos are clickable to see larger.



Again, no photography. Ann, who is an artist and architect, liked the show at the gallery even better than the QV 2008 show. I agree because it was the work of the jurors from the past few vision’s show. The work was done by mature and accomplished artists — Personal Visions, Past Quilt Visions Jurors Exhibition. My favorites were by Jane Dunnewold and Mary Ann Jordan. Mary Ann does not have a website. Her work was very large with bold designs created with paint and perhaps dye. In her artist statement, she says that she loves to take a piece of fabric with paint drips and splotches that might have been rejected and turn it into a beautiful quilt. I so relate to that!! Jane’s work was, of course, gorgeous complex cloth.

Another interesting exhibit had a quilt from each of the previous QV shows. It was so mind blowing to see the transition from a very traditional appliqued quilt to a very abstract whole cloth quilt created from a piece of gorgeous dyed fabric on which the stitching formed wonderful elements from the dyed designs

Our final stop was Old Town San Diego where Ann needed to get some supplies for her new passion, wire wrapped jewelry. She is starting with copper because silver is more pricey. I snapped these photos while she was shopping.



And I have to show you the greast checkered water tower that I photographed on the drive home.


Mecca and Salvation Mountain

Tuesday, February 17th, 2009

OK, I know you are wondering if I have gone off on some strange pilgrimage! Keep reading.

Today, we awoke to a glorious day in the desert — sunshine, clear vistas and sweater weather. With Mike driving and Mr C navigating, the four of us took off for a visit to the Salton Sea area to the south. We drove through the Joshua Tree National Park. We stopped at the Cholla garden and were amazed to see this bad boy cactus growing as far as the eye could see.



Our first mission was to arrive in Mecca.


We arrived at the Salton Sea to find a tranquil and beautiful spot in the middle of a desert. The sea was formed in 1905 when the Colorado river flooded the Sonoran Desert’s Salton basin. It is a major resource for millions of migratory birds.


These are American White Pelicans.


We did some off road driving on some muddy roads looking for the mud volcanoes. We decided that it was not worth leaving the vehicle to walk through the mud for a closer look. I didn’t even take a photo. But, it was an exciting detour.

Our next mission was to find Salvation Mountain, an outsider art installation, and Slab City, a place where folks hook up rather sketchy trailers and mobile homes and have built quite a community.

Here is Salvation Mountain and the creator.



That is him in the red jacket. What a charming man.


On up the road we found Slab City, so named because it was originally laid out for campers in rvs. It seems to have been taken over by camping squatters who have claimed the area and say it is the “last free place.”



The area we drove through is very fertile and with irrigation, many crops grow there. I love this photo of date palms.


We ended up in Palm Springs where we enjoyed a late lunch/early dinner of chinese food. It was a fun day.

You can see all my photos, from the sublime to the ridiculous, on this Flickr set: Salton Sea, Salvation Mountain, Slab City.

Tomorrow, we head for the coast to see the Visions show at the Oceanside Museum of Art and then to San Diego to visit the Visions Gallery.

Monday was for the Birds

Tuesday, February 17th, 2009

Los Angles area had rain and snow in the mountains. We had wind and some spritzing. Mr C and I took a walk in the morning and the sun felt so wonderful, even with the wind. After lunch, we decided to drive to the outlets, about an hour west of us. The further we drove, the worse the weather was. It was pouring and the roads were flooding. There were accidents from hydro-planing and warnings of flash flooding and snow in the pass. Guess what we did? We turned around and headed back to the comfort of the high desert. We could see the sun shining on Twentynine Palms in the distance. There was a rainbow, but too faint to show up.


Outside the kitchen window, is a fenced in area where Diana, the housekeeper, feeds the birds. I love watching them when I am in the kitchen.



There are lots of doves and another bird, I have not identified yet. This morning I saw a beautiful California quail, but by the time I got my camera, he was long gone.

Today, we are driving through Joshua Tree National Park to the Salton Sea. It should be a great photo op. The weather is clear, the sun is blazing and the wind has died down.

More Travel Talk

Sunday, February 15th, 2009


We arose early yesterday and were on the road by 7 am. Here is the beautiful sunrise from the hotel parking lot. Here is the sunrise again from the road.


I get a kick out of the modern windmills that stand like sentinels on hillsides. This shot was taken in Northern California.


And the windmills as you drive into the desert seemed to have multiplied since we were here 2 years ago.


I wonder where these folks are headed:


I know we are getting close to the high desert when we begin to see the strange Joshua trees.


Today we went up into the hills to Pioneer Town to tour some Ranch homes. I mean Ranch as in horses, not Ranch as in 50’s architecture!





The above shots were from a combination barn and house. It was very cool. Here are Mike and Mr C headed to a small home that had out buildings for the horses.


We cut short the walking around Pioneer Town because it was really cold. We had a delicious lunch at Pappy and Harriet’s. I took this shot of the very interesting ladies room stall doors.


Here is a view of the house where we are staying as you walk across the cactus strewn landscape from Mike and Ann’s casita.


We have to be careful where we walk because of the Jumping Cholla cactus. It is notorious for very loose joint attachment, then the joints attach to hapless by-passers with the slightest brush. They can be very painful.

Checking in from Rehab

Sunday, February 15th, 2009

Ha! We are in the desert at Mike and Ann’s oasis where we are spending the next week drying out (well, it will probably rain) and rejuvenating in slightly warmer temps (6os). We are staying in the renovated home of Ann’s childhood. Her mom recently passed away and they have turned it into a beautiful retreat. I will post pictures later. I am about 2 days behind in my travels. We had a boring and almost uneventful drive from SF yesterday and arrived here about 3:30 in the afternoon. I had a really bad nose bleed on the grapevine summit of I-5, which is about 4000 ft. We are in the high desert – at about 3300 ft and I had another one last night – not so bad. We also almost had a dangerous collision with a stalled vw bug on I-5 near Magic Kingdom. Thanks to good defensive driving  by all those around us, no one got hurt.

Last night, we had a wonderful Thai soup and lots of catching up with Mike and Ann. It was good to unpack and know we will be in the same place for a few days.

I have just uploaded my photos from the new Academy of Science building at Golden Gate Park. It was very crowded, and we did not get to every venue, but we enjoyed the feast for the eyes. You can go to my Flickr set to see all of the photos (click on slide show), but here is a tease. Nature has such a sense of humor and a great color aesthetic!!


A Bromeliad poison dart frog – about the size of your thumb.


Blue jelly fish.


Beautiful tropical fish.


More jellies.

Today we are off to Pioneer Town for a home tour and BBQ.