Saturday, September 26, 2015

Discovery on the Green

Every time I go to Discovery Green in downtown Houston, it's bustling with activity and unique events for both children and adults alike. The adventurous can try their hand at a kayak or guide a model sailboat along the lake (both $5). You can attend a zumba class, a yoga class, or a Circus Arts Class (seriously). You can watch movies, concerts, learn a new language, or search through a Flea Market for a new treasure. You could stop by the park every day and try something new. . .

Discovery Green has wonderful events for our furry friends including this fun dog jumping event DockDogs

Take a moment to cool down!

Kayak, paddle board, and model boat fun!

John P. McGovern Playground was designed to resemble migrating birds and has a soft place for children to land. 

Just walking the dog and the pig at Discovery Green

Deck made from eco friendly Brazilian Ipe Wood with tables and chairs for lounging

There really is something for everyone. So do yourself a favor and don't skip this beautiful green space due to its petite size, because it carries a big punch of fun.

Check the website for up-to-date events:

Keep Exploring!
The Bayou Botanist

Thursday, September 24, 2015

The Poetics of Japanese Gardens

For the next two days, you have the opportunity to view the special exhibition, I Am Content with What I Lack: The Poetics of Japanese Gardens at 4411 Montrose Blvd. The exhibition features the work of three Houston artists Terry Hagiwara, Mari Omori, and Masaru Takiguchi and was designed by Houston landscape architect Keiji Asakura 

Entrance to "I Am Content with What I Lack: The Poetics of Japanese Gardens" 
Upon entering the space, you are at once aware of the smell of moss and the slight rustle of air against paper.  The attention to detail is extraordinary; a visitor will carefully follow "stone paths" of various shapes and sizes through paper shrouded rooms. Images of fields, forests, and stones are located at the bottom of the paper scrolls so the viewer's eyes will stay focused on the ground and each careful step. There is an anticipation as you walk around each space teased by glimpses of what lays ahead. 

Read a full description of the exhibition here . 

I Am Content with What I Lack: The Poetics of Japanese Gardens was curated by Christine Starkman, curator of Asian art at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, and was made possible by the generous support of the Japan America Society of Houston (JASH). 

Salt is placed by the entrance of Japanese homes to purify those as they enter 

Mari Omori, akari/paper lantern, 2009, Mino washi paper, archival paste, metal and lighting fixture

A view into the first large space

Notice the careful placement of stones,  the wave like patterns of the moss, and the images at the bottom of the scrolls

Glimpses into the connected spaces

The first view of the rock garden

Masaru Takiguchi, Night Ocean, 1995, Brazilian black granite

The rock garden has two benches for visitors to enjoy a few minutes of reflection 

Hanging paper of hidden scenes 

Japanese Illustrated Books on loan from a private collection

My photo doesn't capture the beauty of these bowls;  Terry Hagiwara, Tea Bowls, 2005-present, Stoneware with glaze

Careful steps and contemplation
You have two days to see this stunning exhibition. Although I wish it could exist as a permanent installation, there is beauty too in its transience.

Exhibition hours:
Friday and Saturday 11:30am- 5:30pm  --- Admission is free 

While you're in the building, be sure to also visit Katja Loher's brilliant exhibition Where Does Time Begin? across the hall at Anya Tish Gallery.

Keep exploring!
The Bayou Botanist

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Jazz, Beignets, and Blue Dog

New Orleans has always been magical to me; green street cars that seem to last forever, moss hanging from live oaks, Mardi Gras Indians, and tall tales that can keep up with Texas. While in NOLA, I always try to visit my favorite places; a little Snug Harbor on Frenchman's, a little Sucre on Magazine, and of course, a whole lot of the Sculpture Garden located in City Park. The Sculpture Garden is connected to the New Orleans Museum of Art but seems to exist in another realm.  Towers of instruments rise out of a winding waterway, ladders lead to floating windows, and Godzilla-sized Mardi Gras Beads and Safety Pins make you feel like you just fell down the rabbit hole. Want to view the sculpture garden from another vantage point? You can rent a paddle boat or a gondola to take along the lagoon into the garden.
Robert Indiana, Love, Red Blue, 1966-1997; George Rodrigue, We Stand Together, 2005; Jean- Michel OthonielL'Arbre Aux Colliers, 2002
Arman, Pablo Casal's Obelisk, 1983, Bronze

Leandro Erlich, Window with a ladder-Too Late for Help, 2006, Metal ladder, steel underground structure, fiberglass, aluminum frame
Do Ho Suh, Karma, Stainless Steel 

Jean-Michel Othoniel, L'arbre Aux Colliers (Tree of Necklaces), 2002, Glass and Stainless Steel
Ida Kohlmeyer, Rebus 3D-89-3, 1989, Painted Aluminum

Anish Kapoor, Untitled, 1997, Stainless steel 

Coosie van Bruggen and Claes Oldenburg, Corridor Pin Blue, 1999; Spy the Jaume Plensa, Overflow in the background?
Louise Bourgeois, Spider, 1995, bronze

Roy Lichtenstein, Five Brushstrokes, 1994, Aluminum ; stands in front of NOMA

While this post focuses on the Sculpture Garden, there are several other special Parks in NOLA including (but not limited to: Audubon Park, Audubon Zoo, and the New Orleans Botanical Garden (also located at City Park).

Audubon Zoo

New Orleans City Park

New Orleans Botanical Gardens
Keep Exploring!
The Bayou Botanist 

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