Thursday, April 08, 2010

Wall to wall Part 2 - and yeah, my walls are indigo

As promised, and in response to an email asking me,
"What do you hang on your walls, Victoria?"
I'm sharing a look at more of our home in the East Village.

Well, it should come as no surprise that the first thing we hang
on our walls is COLOR.
(You can see the first look-around here.)

So Let's move upstairs, where a deep indigo rules.......

The first photo, above, is taken at the top of the stairs, looking
towards the children's computer/DVD space
(no real tv) and work room beyond

The walls in the main open area/master bedroom are a deep indigo. My husband groused about it at first -- "mi no like eeh. I' look black." But when the lighting is right, both daylight and incidental lighting, it is a rich hue, and the perfect backdrop for more photos and art. It's deep, inviting and embraces you.

To the rear of the space is the workroom, where the
girls cut loose --they can dribble glue, spill paint,

spray glitter and generally unleash
their creative whims without worry. The space is the former
kitchen of our original one-level, 2-bedroom apartment
(we've expanded into the 2-bedroom unit below)
and the tile floor remains, the perfect surface for creative kids.

And a neurotic mother.

I wanted the kids to be inspired in that narrow space.
So we took a trip to Ikea and easily furnished the room with tables,
chairs, bookshelves and an overhead light, all at a reasonable cost
(it's for a good
time, not a long time, to quote Kid Shilleen).

And then I really got inspired.

I re-created a Matisse painting,
The Wine Press, on the long
wall facing the tables.

I turned the reference image, which I grabbed online, on its side:

and then drew a grid on both the reference image and the
wall in order to scale up
the shapes.

Because the room is so narrow, I can't take a good pic of
the entire wall straight on. I think you can get an idea of how
faithful it is to the original by this section:

For the far end, smaller wall, I simply made up a
Matisse-like abstract shape to fill the wall. This is a close up:

Now pulling further back, with the open master bedroom behind me -
again, a wall full of art work, photographs and sentimental souvenirs:

Starting from the back, here is a close up/reverse view
of another one of my favorite pieces -

an original 1940s travel poster, printed in the UK, for South Africa.
I picked it up for a few dollars at a flea market in
Rhode Island over 20 years ago, before the end of apartheid -

It's not in mint condition. There is some visible water damage and staining
through the
letters "S" and "A". I'll never forget the look on the
framer's face when
I insisted upon having it preserved in a
a high quality frame - she thought I was a fool.
She didn't recognize it's ironic and historic
value at the time and
thought the frame was worth 10x more than the poster.
The tables, as in much of African history, have decidedly turned.

Land of Sunshine and Adventure indeed --- the illustration is
beautiful. An "Ndebele Girl", from "Transvaal."

Further on down the line, a quintessential Providence, Rhode Island
poster by the infamous "Mad Peck Studio".
It sums up Providence for just about anyone who has ever lived there.

Here's a special series of captures for my Providence friends who I know read my blog regularly -- each panel is true, no? Literally and metaphorically......

Next up -- a beautiful soft sculpture tapestry, entitled "Selva", or
"Jungle," which I bought in Peru while traveling in the Amazon in the late '80s.
These hand-sewn tapestries were piled waist deep at the outdoor markets,
each depicting a different local scene. I dug deep to find one that
highlighted the Amazon jungle, my favorite.

Here's a close up -

Of course, our children's creations occupy central real estate. I've found
it so hard to pick and choose among favorite pieces
that it's often best to include several in a
collage of art work and photos......

Lastly, another flea market find -- a hand tinted photograph from turn-of-the-century Paris, or so it seems. I dont' know much about this photographer ("Reublinger, Paris") nor this particular subject.

But I thought she was sublime.....

Ok, that about does it, with the exception of our
children's rooms and the loo! I'll respect our kids' privacy
and say only that one bedroom is painted in lime,
the upstairs loo is a deep fuschia, and the other child's bedroom
is painted in a rich coral.
Sort of like these colors:

Hope you've enjoyed this abbreviated tour. I haven't shown you ever nook and cranny nor item hanging on the wall but it's a good representation of how we live.
Back to drawing and painting. I have some lovely sketches I
made in Battery Park this week to share with you........


Melanie said...


Ginny Huber said...

What a great tour, Victoria!! Absolutely love the space, the indigo, the colors, Matissse-like and others, and your work and your finds and kids work all fitting together so marvelously!

VH McKenzie said...

Thanks, Ginny -- it's a work in progress. We keep generating more art, more photos, more memories and they migrate to the walls!

Makaka said...

Nice South Africa Poster :-)
It's more worth that the frame now. This poster sells for $800+ from poster dealers.