i’ve really noticed autumn in south africa this year. mostly due to the fact that i’ve been on a few drives into the countryside when not couch dwelling, and also making an effort to get outside with my dogs for walkies (they walk me, really). the trees are beautifully red and orange and yellow, the fields are strikingly green, it’s all very fa-la-la i want to run down this hill and collapse into a heap of fallen leaves and giggles at the bottom. you know?
so i decided to dedicate a colour comparisons post to my favourite season, using the artwork of american impressionist john joseph enneking and mashing it up with some rad street style.
* yes the title is totally a counting crows pun. i am not ashamed! this is still one of my favourite songs ever.
you’ll remember hila from her things i like right now a while back. we’ve teamed up for a cool little project where we pick a film, i create some colour comparison mash ups (be it with art, fashion, vintage…) and hila writes a short piece of fiction based on the results. i was immediately intrigued when hila suggested the idea, as it combines creative strengths from both sides – and i am in awe of anyone who can write creatively.
the first film is bright star directed by jane campion, which tells the story of the romance between fanny brawne and john keats. i paired stills from the film with paintings by edmund c. tarbell, an american impressionist who often painted portraits and scenes of his wife and children. hila’s piece of fiction follows.
fanny brawne sits in a corner and watches an ailing man duplicate words. her needle tears and reforms incisively.
she imagines a tweed suit that can be gilded with unutterable sentences. she would sew this suit as armour, lain against a rapt chest that beats irregularly with illness.
she knows her woman’s work is really a form of enlivening. an act of creation and generosity.
fanny’s watching becomes a topic of fascination for someone who reads letters meant only for her. after her mother’s death, a young girl likes to sit in the enclosed space of a torn armchair, examining the cover, the pages, the smell of a book of letters with fanny’s name. this too is an act of evasive generosity, parcelled out through distance.
she mirrors what fanny creates. in her bed at night, she lays fabric before her and rips neat squares. they cover one another like a palimpsest. what clever fingers can do is bind the trauma of experience with love.
her mother liked the quiet contemplation of needlepoint. like praying, she would say. and so her prayers come as a form of domestic reconstitution, not sublime poetry. the revenant residue of someone who will be forgotten, while words remain.
fanny feels his straining beneath clothes as she sits in corners, wrapped in chairs like a cocoon. this evasion, this bodily separation, comes together through her sharp needle, moving in, moving out.
words by hila schachar.
finally got my hands on a copy of bossypants yesterday (i had to wait for the ipad kindle edition since the actual book isn’t available in south africa yet. like most good things i anticipate it won’t be for a while.) i got home from work, made myself comfortable on the couch and didn’t move for the next 5 hours. then i got into bed and read some more. according to this fancy contraption i’m 80% through this puppy. can never seem to pace myself with something that is so good. my favourite bit (so far) would have to be where tina talks about her dad don fey. this gem specifically:
Before I was born, my mother took my brother to Greece for the whole summer to visit family. When they were finally coming back, my dad washed and waxed his Chevy convertible, put on his best sharkskin suit, and drove all the way from Philadelphia to New York International Airport to pick them up.
Their flight was due to arrive early in the morning, so Don Fey, who is never late for anything, got to the airport just before dawn. As he popped on his sweet lid and walked across the deserted parking lot toward the terminal, he saw two black gentlemen approaching from far away. He played it cool to hide his apprehension. He was in New York, after all, one of the world’s most dangerous cities if you’re from any other city, and from far away in the dark he couldn’t tell if the guys were airport employees or loiterers.
As they got closer, he noticed they were staring him down, he continued to play it cool. Don Fey had grown up in West Philly, where he lived comfortably as a Caucasian minority. Of course these guys didn’t know that. His heart was beating a little faster as they came within ten feet of each other.
The guys looked at him intently, then one turned to the other and said, “That is one boss, bold, bladed motherfucker.”
consequently i don’t have much to share today. so here’s a little interview i did with amber at her new blog (south african readers will know amber from the mr. price blog.) she gussied it up to another level, seriously.
i can also reveal a nice little colour comparisons project for J.Crew with their fall collection that is up on their blog! i’m quite amazed that so many of these big fashion companies have their official blogs on tumblr… kudos to tumblr. here are a couple of the comparisons that didn’t make the cut, see their blog for the rest.
when i was browsing through the latest spring modern sale at bukowskis (they really bring me endless amounts of joy, that auction house) i was quite taken by all the beautiful flower still life pieces. i thought back to how some of my favourite collections from the autumn 2011 shows were so bright and colourful, and knew it would make for a nice comparison – especially since i am noticing that the northerners are really enjoying the coming spring and we, conversely, are really loving the coming of autumn. the other day i stood in the sun and actually relished the warmth as opposed to cursing it. this really is the best time of year.
a series i love so much i actually have to hold myself back from making more. trying to keep these relatively few and far between because i know that if i didn’t they would become boring. it would be like eating pancakes every day. where’s the fun in that? pancakes are so good because you only have them now and then – usually when it’s raining. apparently only a south african / afrikaans thing … or … something only my mom did? consequently not a rainy day goes by without the thought of pancakes now. anyway, i think you get it. colour comparisons = pancakes in this roundabout analogy.
see the rest of the colour comparisons.
ps: it’s not actually raining here, but i hope it is somewhere.