July 24, 2012 — An Earfull At the Ear Inn

As the weeks wear on and I get clos­er to the dead­line for sub­mit­ting a grant appli­ca­tion to the NEA, I have peri­ods of doubt and won­der if it’s even worth it to try for such a pres­ti­gious thing.  And if I don’t get award­ed a grant what will it mean – that the project is unwor­thy, and I should give up?

Some­times fac­ing a lengthy grant appli­ca­tion makes you want to cut and run.

Glanc­ing through pic­tures I took in May I’m remind­ed that get­ting grants and mak­ing Art are two dif­fer­ent things.  These black and white snaps were tak­en on a hot sum­mer night when I joined my hus­band Paul and our friend Peer at one of NY’s old­est bars – The Ear Inn on Spring Street.

Photo of Paul and Peer at the Ear Inn

Paul and Peer at the Ear Inn

As I ate mus­cles at the bar and lis­tened to old-time jazz, a woman named Kate­ri­na intro­duced her­self.  She had an intrigu­ing accent and was very charm­ing.

Catha­ri­na is half Russ­ian half Greek.

Sev­er­al min­utes lat­er her friend Roland joined her – an artist, he showed her pho­tos of his lat­est work on his Iphone.The strik­ing shad­ows in his imagery prompt­ed me to talk about the ideas for shad­ow play I had in mind for FINDING KUKAN.

Designer and artist Roland Gebhardt

Design­er and artist Roland Geb­hardt

For some great use of shad­ows, you should see THE THIRD MAN, said Roland.  He sound­ed like he knew what he was talk­ing about.  When I got home I looked up Roland’s web­site – pho­tos of his per­for­mance pieces made me think of all the pos­si­bil­i­ties before me. The doors to cre­ation opened up a crack.

Image from Roland Gebhardt's Layers

Image from Roland Geb­hardts Performance/Installation “Lay­ers”

As I watched THE THIRD MAN for the first time the doors were thrown wide open.  Every shot was a com­po­si­tion­al gem and fired up ideas in my head for ways to visu­al­ize my own search.

 

Scene from THE THIRD MAN

An ear­ly scene from THE THIRD MAN — shad­ows and a great stair­well — 2 of my favorite things.

I’m hang­ing on to the DVD so I can watch it for the third time – a reward I’m going to give myself after get­ting that grant app fin­ished.  You DO need a lot of mon­ey to make movies, but you DON’T need a lot to enjoy the heck out of them.

Screen shots from THE THIRD MAN

Screen shots from THE THIRD MAN

Thanks to Roland Geb­hardt and the Ear Inn for remind­ing me of why I’m writ­ing grants appli­ca­tions in the first place.

Texting from The Ear Inn

The mys­te­ri­ous guy across the bar must be writ­ing a nov­el on his cell phone.

Whether it’s the bar, the gym, or the beach, we all need to leave the desk once in awhile to get a fresh per­spec­tive.  Where do you go when you need a cre­ative breath of fresh air?

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2 Responses to July 24, 2012 — An Earfull At the Ear Inn

  1. duriandave says:

    Good luck with the NEA appli­ca­tion! I know from my work that it’s not an easy task, espe­cial­ly with the ever-chang­ing reg­is­tra­tion and sub­mis­sion facil­i­ties.

    It’s hard to rec­on­cile the need for recog­ni­tion (whether it’s fund­ing or just a sim­ple com­ment) with that deep­er impulse that dri­ves all cre­ative work. For me, return­ing to that inner jour­ney is what refresh­es me. And I usu­al­ly do this by walk­ing out in nature, where the endurance and flow of ener­gy always man­age to set me back to cen­ter.

    I’ll keep my fin­gers crossed for you. 🙂

    • robin says:

      Thanks, Dave. Remind­ed me that I should walk the beach more. But after a life­time there with­out sun­screen, my der­ma­tol­o­gist just put his foot down and for­bid me to go any­where with­out 70 spf on! I will be tak­ing a lot of sun­set walks :). Alo­ha, Robin

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