April 28, 2006


Well, some, at least. I had intended to snap a few more than I did, but when I went to take a photo of one lady's extraordinary display of quilts, she scolded me severely and asked me not to take pictures of her quilts, so I got all nervous about taking ANY pictures of anything specific. But, maybe you'll get the general feel of the event.

First up, the view from my office--a more southeasterly view:

and then one in a more northeasterly direction:

I have a nice view.

This was a steel drum band from UAB they had set up to play--

right in front of the gyro trailers.

The band was really quite good. The food I can't vouch for because I was too impatient to stand in a line that did not move.

On around--here is one guy's metal stuff that I thought was quite good--

I took this before getting scolded, so let me just say to anyone who sees this photo NOT to rip off this man's designs! EVER! You will also note the woman in the foreground is in high-water pants, which I generally can't tolerate, but ONLY when worn as business attire. On a day like today, they were perfectly appropriate. Which is why I decided to walk around the rest of the time with my slacks rolled up to my knees. (Sorry, no picture of that.)

The nice thing about the park is that there's ample shade--nice big trees, and a gazebo that usually houses an assortment of urban campers. Today it was taken up with the event organizers. They seem to have showered. Also, you will notice that the mama over on the right of the picture is also seen wearing a gaucho-inspired variation of the high water pants; but again, in a much more appropriate setting for them. (And she was cute, too, so she would have gotten a pass no matter what.)

Another purty-type shot just for effect--

--along with one of the entrance to the old main library that now serves as the archive building--

Rounding the corner, I disturbed this couple's lunch for no good reason.

One of my favorite things about the park is one that I should have mentioned the other day when I did the post on the anniversary of the Spanish-American War--there is a very impressive statue in the park commemorating local soldiers who served.
Here's one view:

--and another:

I like it for a couple of reasons--the pose is natural, and is at once alert and relaxed, and distinctively masculine. We also have one of Viquesney's mass produced "Spirit of the American Doughboy" WWI statues, but it just isn't as good, mainly because it looks too posed. No one runs with a grenade like that unless they want to get killed. But the proto-Rough Rider gets it right, and the details are quite nicely done, right down to the well-rendered Krag-Jorgensen rifle and sling--

and the Mills pattern cartridge belt--

The dedication reads like this:


APRIL 21, 1898 -- JULY 4, 1902

There is a companion inscription on the back, but I couldn't get around to it to photograph it. There are two other mottos on each side. This simple one:

and this one, which at one time was equally well-known:

"Gridley" refers to Captain Charles Gridley, skipper of Dewey's flagship, USS Olympia.

In all, a nice perambulation, and some stunningly beautiful artwork. However. (Always one of those, isn't there?) Although some of the work was beautiful, there was an equal amount that was just crap. Silly, pretentious, self-referential, self-absorbed, talentless dreck. Which to me is one of the problems with art nowadays--basically, anything can be art, if an artist says "this is my art."

Take this famous image, for example:

I mean, what in the world is so great and wonderful about that!? Well, an artist decided it was art, and therefore, it is art. And since it's managed to become famous by being famous, there are bound to be some who'd accept it as art.

Even though it's nothing more than a plaza drainage grate I took a picture of myself and diddled about with.

I suppose if people want to produce crap for a crapophilic market, that's fine, but it's still crap.

ANYway, that was my lunch hour in the park!

NOW THEN, back to work.

Posted by Terry Oglesby at April 28, 2006 02:02 PM

I like how you found other things to take photos of since you weren't allowed to photograph the art. It's a very nice festival. I just wish I could afford something. Some prices on things I liked: photos $300-400, paintings/mixed media $1000-$2500.

Last year, I bought a nice piece for $95. I'm not saying that the art isn't WORTH what they are asking, but they shouldn't expect to sell that many pieces if the price range excludes 99% of the audience.

Like you, I would have at least spent $8 on lunch, but after standing in line for ten minutes and not moving at all, we went to Quiznos. I complained about the lack of operational excellence of the food vendors, but if they had an idea of what that meant, they wouldn't be food vendors, probably.

Posted by: megabeth at April 28, 2006 03:18 PM

Thank you, ma'am! If I'd have seen you, I would have taken your picture. ::sigh::

As for artwork, you are welcome to download and frame my von Zurn for free.

Posted by: Terry Oglesby at April 28, 2006 03:24 PM

I should do a picture tour of Richmond sometime. Thank you for showing us your little slice of the fair city of Birmingham.

Posted by: Sarah G. at April 28, 2006 03:29 PM

It does have its bits and pieces of cheerful urbanity.

Posted by: Terry Oglesby at April 28, 2006 03:34 PM

Can you call Possumblog art?

Posted by: jim at April 28, 2006 04:35 PM

Of course, but then people might mistake it for Art Carney, or Art Vandelay, and so I just stick with Possumblog.

Posted by: Terry Oglesby at April 28, 2006 04:40 PM

Thanks for the pictures, Terry. If you were a little older you could rename the blog "The Artful Codger" but you are not anywhere near "codger" status. "The Artful Possumblog"?

Posted by: Stan at April 28, 2006 04:56 PM

Well, given my well-known affliction with flatulence, you're probably on the right track. Maybe an eff on the front end...

Posted by: Terry Oglesby at April 28, 2006 05:04 PM