Feb 132014
 

CameraZOOM-20140213103420984-picsay

 

My granny was a fanatical crocheter. She made curtains, tablecloths, shirts, cushions, doilies,   anything you could imagine. Some of these are still in the good shape,  some of her craftwork unfortunately is disintegrating – like the fragments of a net curtain I’ ve used to make this heart.  I did two, one is kept by my daughter in her room, this one is in my shop. I am glad I’ve found a way to keep her work alive…

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Feb 022014
 

Многие люди, особенно интроверты, предпочитают не ввязываться в ожесточенные дискуссии. Сидеть в уголочке и наблюдать. Но всегда ли должно идти легким путем?
Что, если одно из высказанных мнений вы считаете несправедливым или опасным?

Каждый раз когда мы общаемся, мы посылаем друг другу сигналы. Услышишь один раз: “Ты поступаешь плохо” или “к добру такое не приведет” – и пропустишь мимо ушей. Услышишь десять раз – и задумаешься. Конечно, позитивная реакция, поддержка того мнения, которое вы считаете правильным, тоже помогает. Мы все можем ошибаться, однако человечество в целом стремится к лучшему взаимопониманию и более стабильному оптимальному сосуществованию, поскольку оно выгоднее большинству. Жестокости и неравенство постепенно уходят в прошлое. Можно надеяться, что статистически “правильные” советы возобладают.

Когда разговор идет о вещах серьезных, важно преодолеть себя и высказаться. Будь той каплей, которая может переполнить океан. А то потом будет совесть мучить…

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Dec 262013
 

It is nice to give and recieve presents in the darkest coldest time of the year. But why should this only happen once? I can easily imagine having a special day in every season when people exchange gifts. It would be good both for relationships and for the economy. I think we need to embrace some special seasonal occasions (solstices and equinoxes?) which would bring more cheer and expectations to our lives, and I am not talking just about kids. It feels wrong to have major celebrations only once a year.

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Dec 192013
 

Feeling the need to have some changes in my life, I’ve decided to create the new “Linandara and Artish Folk” website. A proper one. It is going to be about arts, crafts, creativity, lifestyle, ethical issues, located at linandara.com and linandara.co.uk . Few days ago I did a first step: a temporary simple “business card” type website. Everything (like life itself) is a work in progress. There is now a facebook group for the future site, which eventually will have a forum. Please feel free to join the group and I hope you enjoy being in it.

To let people know about the new website I had an idea to do some handmade business cards. They are evolving as I make them. On the back I’ve put some keywords which would describe the future site, topics which would be discussed on it or be associated with it. The list is  changing from card to card. At the moment it includes Arts, crafts, creativity, handmade, fantasy, rationalist, dreaming, emphatic, discovery, freethinking, impressionalist, bohemian, ethnic, eccentric, independent, sci-fi, по-русски, commissions, one of the kind, etc.

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Any suggestions are welcome!

 

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Захотелось перемен, и я собралась сделать себе новый сайт, посвященный вопросам искусства, рукоделия, творчества, этики и жизни вообще. Сайт будет расположен по адресам linandara.com и linandara.co.uk. Сейчас там проcтая временная страничка. Как и сама жизнь, работа идет методом проб и ошибок. Есть группа посвящена новому сайту. Пожалуйста присоединяйтесь и, надеюсь, всем будет интересно.  Буду рада любым советам.

18-12-13

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Jun 152013
 

When East and West, North and South embraced each other, when prints became produced and sold on global scale, when the way we see the world became firmly affected by photography… 1890s-1950s. Beautiful postery style, both decorative and realistic, traditional and modern, Oriental and European reigned. Areas of flat color, bold composition and outlines are very typical for this period.

Russian Ballet Programme

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Portrait of Miss Elizabeth Keith by Ito Shinsui, 1922

 

 

 

A Gate at the Stupa of Sanchi by Hiroshi Yoshida. 1932

 

 

 

 

‘Lanterns’ (1906) by American artist Bertha Lum (1869-1954)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Carl Moser “Strickende Frau mit Booten” 1926

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And much, much more

 

 

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Jun 052013
 

This style of painting fromed in early 19th century at the lower river Mezen region, far North of European Russia. It uses ancient simple, often geometrical elements and only three colors: red, black on white or yellow background.

The symbols used could be traced both to ancient Slavic ones

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

and ones used by Finno-Ugric peoples (e.g. Komi geometrical patterns). Sadly enogh, the Wikipedia article only lists Slavic roots of this folk art painting style.

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Jun 022013
 

Tribal Dancer Large Original Life Drawing Monoprint by Linandara  Local customs, costumes, crafts, foods… It’s all seems to melt gradually into some new globalised uniformity. In a way, this is a sad picture, a loss of our beautiful diversity. Western people often feel touched looking at tribal portraits, especially of children, in exotic attires.  But what these people from distant lands would prefer themselves, given choise? Modern living with its salaries, doctors, schools, pensions, benefits, equality and human rights or posing for tourists for a few coins? Is wearing those heavy earring painful? Did that beautiful bride choose her future husband herself? How old is she? How well is she educated? Do we have to stay in a fantasy land? Why so many people are migrating to cities and leaving traditional way of life behind?

 

The solution to the loss of traditional cultures seems to lay in our free will to explore them and carry their achievements into the future. Lets enjoy the color and sound, lets experiment without being afraid of onlookers. Lets celebrate free creative life. Nobody should ever try to force anybody into the past. Rather we should help to grow a free and equal for all future – firmly rooted in the best from our past.

 

 

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Sep 022010
 
Sketch of Hydrangea paniculata

Unframed

A4 in size (approximately 21×30 cm; 8×12 inches)

Original artwork, signed by the artist.

A sketch of a beautiful little flowering tree (Hydrangea paniculata) from my mother’s garden in Russia. Some yellow Rudbeckia laciniata Goldball flowers on the background.

It was quite a challenge to do outdoor sketches near Moscow during summer 2010 because of incredible heat and smock from peat fires. I had to work as fast as I could.
 
The print with  “warmed up” colors is available from Deviant Art
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May 152010
 
Dream Window by Alexandra Cook

The artwork depicts an imaginary art deco – styled goblet (chalice) on the window with distant fantasy city below and stars above. Media: oil pastels and pencils Process: painting from imagination Key colors: blue Original size: approximately 18 x 24 cm (7 x 9 inches) for sale here: http://www.etsy.com/listing/17136882/dream-window-original-modern-fantasy 

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Dec 122008
 

I had a happy childhood. Of course I hated or laughed at all that communist staff but I was so lucky with teachers at school and plenty of friends. I hope my kids will remember their school years with happiness and warmth too.

I started school at eight and this didn’t stop me (or any of my friends in Russia) from getting to universities and colleges we liked. I’ve been shocked when at the time my kids were something like 3.5 or 4.5 a nearby school head teacher knocked on our door and said its time for my little ones to go to their Nursery (just for a couple of hours first). As I didn’t have any friends in this country, nobody for my kids to play with, and I wanted to do more art at home, I decided, OK, lets do it. It wasn’t easy for my son to fit in at first. Once when he didn’t want to get inside after a play time, a teacher grabbed and pulled him and he, scarred, baited her in the arm. Needless to say we received a very angry letter from school, got really terrified and had to apologise.

We and kids started to have colds continuously. And little ones started getting head lice. My husband and me we haven’t had them at schools – full stop. My mother-in-law didn’t had this problem in Britain, same my mother in Russia. Even in my grandmother times, during famine and incredible poverty of 1920s on the boundary of Russia, Ukraine and Belorussia, they didn’t had much of this head lice issue. So why its so bad in modern British and Welsh schools? Well it either 1) parents don’t care for the welfare of their kids so much now; or 2) headlice got more resistant to treatment; or 3) kids are starting school too early when they can’t understand that they shouldn’t touch each other heads; or 4) they encouraged to sit on the floor rather than at desks as we did, and that helps little insects spread; or combination of these.

In Russia kids haven’t been allowed to walk (almost everybody walked, of course) in school wearing outdoor shoes. You had to have a pair of clean ones to change. NOT HERE. All that dogs, birds, rabbits, cats droppings on the way end up in the classroom… Where everybody sits on the floor. Brrr…

There is a VERY STRANGE attitude to sweets in school. They are encouraged! Its your birthday – bring sweets for everybody, you have been good at studying – get a sweet. School parties of course only have sweets and cakes to eat. No surprise, the life expectancy is falling.

When we decided to move to Wales, people were saying how better the schools there are. We were delighted to here about it. What a disappointment! Our children had been doing joint writing for about a year, but here they have been FORBIDDEN to do this. Only typing (I can’t TYPE letters at all!). They had started a foreign language (French) but now have to forget about this because they are learning a little bit of Welsh (why not have both?). They also had to go back to reading very simple books again. At least now they have a free swimming lesson a week (but my daughter said they DON’T HAVE P.E. IN WINTER). My husband can’t forget his football at school in any weather, and I quite enjoyed skiing for 2 hours a week through winter wonderland in the park next to the school (the park is long gone under some apartment blocks in Moscow, but that’s another story). So they start early but they exercise less… Here is a good recipe for childhood obesity. Plus school meals. In England kids actually had some organic food for their dinners. Not here – and that’s for the same price. And some form of potatoes almost every day.

Two more things make me really sad: encouragement of football and pop / rock music culture. When I was at school we were told to strive for the best. If its music, it should be quality music. We don’t listen to much pop or rock at home. It’s not OUR culture. Now my kids are preparing for their Christmas concert and they have to pretend TO BE ROCK OR POP STARS. Something called X-factor? I have no slightest idea what it is (I only know X-files :). In England we had to choose if we want to send the kids to school discos or not. Here in Wales they are hold in SCHOOL TIME. And foolball. We don’t watch sport. All we see is drunken and swearing supporters we have to share trains with. Why our kids should be pushed towards that?

Sorry for some bitterness. Of course there are lots of positive things. Kids had interesting trips to farms and theaters. There are quite a lot of male teachers (unlike when I was at school), and most teachers looks like clever and friendly people. And there are affordable music lessons for everyone. I sort of admire home education enthusiasts but I wouldn’t be able to do this. At least not alone. Anyway, hopefully, everything will be for the best.

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 December 12, 2008  Posted by at 12:10 Britain, England, exercise, healthy life, kids, Russia, sport, time, traditions, Wales Tagged with: , , ,  4 Responses »
Nov 252008
 

I can’t stop thinking: what if this crisis kills Internet? Or something else does? What we are going to do? By the way there is new Survivors TV series (remake) on BBC:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/pressoffice/pressreleases/stories/2008/05_may/30/survivors.shtml

I don’t know yet if its going to be any good but feels somehow possible now. What scares me the most its the loss of order, when everybody who is stronger takes what he or she wants. I just hope we never see it in real life!

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 November 25, 2008  Posted by at 07:28 Britain, computers, ecomony, technology, time, tv Tagged with:  1 Response »
Nov 182008
 

White Horse Village – changing China:

I watched a bit of this programme yesterday

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/programmes/newsnight/5103100.stm

and was somehow surprised by a female presenter attitude. She pointed at a lady and said something like that this unfortunate one has to abandon the idea about going away to work in a factory, instead she is doomed to stay with her kids and work on a farm, and that’s such a hard work. Well, we switched the TV off after that. I think almost any way to earn money is hard, one way or another. It may be the stress (separation from family and home) or unhealthy lifestyle instead of the hard physical work, but the hard bit is still here. Interestingly, I’ve heard there was some research showing that men’s health is worse if they stay at home all the time, women’s health is worse if they go away to work.

I haven’t been to China but I see how in the Russian countryside the city folk dreams to live close to the nature, not just stay here on holidays, but most of the village and small town dwellers wants to move to the city, to give up their land, to fill up yet another huge ugly apartment block. There used to be quite a lot of tension and hostility on the buses, but now the better off people unfortunately mostly use their cars.

Once I was walking through a village, seen a nice old house and decide to take picture of it (no, its not that one). Immediately a very angry elderly lady popped out and started shouting at me. I was surprised – I would count it for a compliment if people started to take pictures of my house or garden. Anyway, she disappeared next year – probably moved to a town…

So, I’m bothered with question: Why people who live close to nature, see the beauty every day, have fresh air to breath and birds to listen to, are often so unhappy, jealous and hostile? Are they already so deeply affected by modern consumer culture watching TV and doing their shopping in towns and cities? In that angry lady’s village, there are crowds of tourist and pilgrims passing by yet local folk don’t even try to organise any farmers market which would be of a great success and helped them to stay afloat, I think. Its just looks like they don’t want to be happy where they are. Even here, in Newtown (Wales) I recon my encounter with xenophobic hostile youngsters shows that there is a class of people why don’t feel any inspiration from marvelous countryside around them, instead they think themselves being on some unfortunate margin of modern society.

PS. And the size of local gardens doesn’t help either. All the fields around, but the ordinary person in Newtown is lucky to have enough land to hung the washing in the back garden! Not surprising there is not much connection to the land.

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Nov 152008
 

I’ve stumbled upon an interesting photo from 2 or 3 years ago in my archive. Its from a medieval Robin Hood Pageant in Nottingham where different times and cultures meet. Not at all that I am advocating for this but I think people often forget that there was a tradition in Europe for women to cover their heads with scarfs and hats.

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Nov 132008
 

I’m an anachronist. Science moves forward, but the rest is not. All so called new ideas are just well forgotten old ones. Reading a diary or an article from long ago I can see that the problems bothering people didn’t change. What they call “modern art” is often at least sixty years old…

That’s why I’m interested in cultures living independently from time (I think this corresponds to fourth stage of ethnos development in L. Gumilev works http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lev_Gumilev or the spirit of fourth quadra in socionics http://www.wikisocion.org/en/index.php?title=Delta_Quadra), groups where children follow examples of parents, traditions are kept and so on.

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 November 13, 2008  Posted by at 06:12 about me, art, philosophy, science, socionics, time Tagged with: , , , ,  No Responses »