Well, here I am again! I have been extremely busy with various matters and also a family trip to Iceland, where, to my delight, I was able to cross two things off my bucket list: the Northern Lights, and whales! Both well worth the wait, and the anticipation.
It was good fun being with all the family, getting suited up for all the activities on offer: the whale watching, snowmobile riding on a huge glacier, walking on the beaches and close to the amazing waterfalls, festooned with rainbows.
Iceland is a worthwhile destination, a stark, dramatic landscape totally different to what I, at least, am used to.
It was amazing sitting by a motel window, in the middle of nowhere, at 11.30 pm, watching a show I will never forget: illuminated curtains rising and falling, the colours fading and brightening in turn. Simply awesome.
Meet Nila (below), a 15m humpback whale recognised because the flukes of her tail are very white. She gave a display of tail slapping, and even breached for us in a breathtaking performance—imagine a double decker bus rising vertically out of the water. No photo, because I prefer to watch events live than be stuck behind my phone. Also I am a useless photographer. Photo below (as well as the minke whale above), courtesy of our captain, who had a proper camera.
Another year over, and the news continues to be horrendous. As usual, art provides relief, and I have had the privilege to see a lot of it, and immerse myself in the idea that humanity cannot be that bad if capable of producing such beauty.
Amongst many others, a standout show was the one juxtaposing Claude Monet and Joan Mitchel at the Louis Vuitton Foundation in Paris.
The frames had been taken off the Monet paintings, giving them a surprisingly contemporary look, and they had been placed in such a way as to both contrast with and complement the abstraction of Joan Mitchell’s wonderful works.
The three Monet paintings below were originally sold to three different American museums, and have never been exhibited together before. I will leave you with this peaceful image with all my best wishes for the festivities ahead.