Lagniappe

a little something extra

Saturday, January 19, 2008

yesterday's moment of prophecy

One of the errands I embarked on yesterday was to get the glass replaced in the frame of a print I have had for a long time. It's probably the piece of framed art I've owned the longest; I've had it reframed once already, but when I moved to CA it wasn't well padded enough and the glass broke. I stashed the piece somewhere flat and safe and forgot about it for a while.

Well, now that I'm on my apartment-painting kick, I was motivated to deal with this outstanding errand on two fronts. One, I needed to move the piece anyway in order to prepare the room it was in for the onslaught of my paint roller. And two, once the room where it will ultimately hang is painted, I want to be able to put it up.

The piece is a poster-size reproduction of a photograph of a ballet dancer's feet and legs from about the knees down. She wears battered canvas ballet slippers and mismatched tights and leg warmers with holes in them; behind her feet, you can see the speckled floor of a rehearsal studio. This is no glamour shot; this is a working artist. And her fifth position is terrific. She is in plie, somewhere between two steps, but there's nothing slipshod about this moment. For me, the piece says "Art is hard work!"

My parents bought this piece at an auction that my ballet company held as fund-raiser during the first year that I belonged. I helped carry pieces across the stage for bidding, as did the other dancers. This was the one I wanted, and my parents didn't hesitate to bid on it. If memory serves, my folks paid $90 for the poster; I remember thinking that was a whole lot of money.

So after I posted yesterday's blog entry, I pulled out the piece to take it to the framers'. In the border around the edge of the image runs the acknowledgment of the artist's name and the exhibit from which this poster is drawn.

Lo and behold...

It's from a 1979 exhibit at the LONG BEACH MUSEUM OF ART.

Now, 25 years after I was given this poster... I live about half a mile from the Long Beach Museum of Art. Erin and I walked right past the museum on our way to dinner when she visited here in the fall.

Wow. Who would have known that I would wind up here?

3 Comments:

At 2:30 PM , Blogger Benjamin said...

That's just cool. I love shit like that! My dad loves to tell the story about a dream his father once had, wherein a man runs up to him in the middle of a grocery store and tells him "Jews can be turned into China-men if they don't join the union!"

Considering what has come to pass since, one has to consider this somewhat prophetic, you think?

I'm loving your constant blogging dear - I hope I'm helping to keep you sufficient company as you go!

 
At 5:18 PM , Blogger meeegan said...

You are fantastic company. Thank you.

 
At 9:43 PM , Blogger Eric said...

I'm just catching up, and I don't know Benjamin, but I'm fascinated with "Jews can be turned into China-men if they don't join the union!"

What's the family significance of this?

I may have to borrow the phrase one day.

 

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