One downside about living on a Wee Ridge of Island at the Back of the World is that it's a fair hike (and then some) to see art masterpieces. So when a lovely collection of Impressionist paintings comes anywhere nearby, even if it's the next island over, I'm making that trip.
It. Was. Wonderful.
I mean, yeah, the stuff I went to see, the art exhibit, was awesome. So was much of the public art scattered around town. (and Wellington has *plenty of public art, especially down by the waterfront.
(I think if you click on the pix, you might see bigger versions!)
But just as inspiring (maybe moreso) were the activities the Tiny Dynamo picked: an afternoon in a Victorian-era Botanical Gardens up on a mountain overlooking the city and a day at Wellington Zoo.
And the city itself is bloody interesting. Wellington is a city where you really feel the presence of a large, intellectual underclass.
I don't know if it's a matter of size, concentration or profile, but the bohemians in Wellies make their presence felt. Used bookstores abound, their shelves full of Ibsen and Kierkegaard, well-thumbed art books and Victorian sensation novels. Shop windows show few mannequins in pastels and beige, more in knuckle-duster-print jackets and tartan bondage pants. For the serious vintage shopper, the place is a gold mine.
And the grafitti: all I can say is, wow. There's plenty of adolescent tagging, sure, but there's a whole lot more serious work, sometimes whimsical, often political/philosophical in nature. I love the way these folks dig in and 'art it up' on their own!
Being in Wellington always kind of freaks me out. For years, this sort of William Gibson-esque grunge was my world. These little bohemias waited for me everywhere I went, and even today, they remain comfortable and familiar.
Nowadays, I surround my self with green spaces and gardens. I work in quiet, in an atmosphere of peace and tranquility. But every now and then, it's sure refreshing to get back to my roots.
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