Saturday, 30 November 2013

Southern Belle

N'awlins, New Orleans, the city that care forgot. Whatever you chose to call this place it has a new, very intimate ickle place in my heart. We decided to go to New Orleans as a holiday from entertaining the many guests we've had recently. This is why I've been away from blogging because in the last two months EVERYONE decided to come and visit. Don't get me wrong, I'm so happy to you all finally decided to get off your asses and actually come and see us. But in the future, can you talk amongst yourselves and try to space it out please? Unable to say no to the one's we loved we ended up with 6 days alone from the beginning of October to mid November. Needless to say a city called, 'the city that care forgot' was a much needed destination for us.

New Orleans is just beautiful. The pace of life is slow and relaxed. A far cry from the constant hustle and bustle of New York. There's no pushing or shoving, people take their time enjoying life as it comes. Most of our days consisted of long walks taking in the gorgeous architecture. The streets are full of pretty quaint little houses in traditional brick or our favorite wood, decorated in an array of colors. The main objective seemed to be to get the right combination of two colors. Southern hospitality is a real thing! We encountered this as soon as we arrived on our first night. We entered a restaurant 5 minutes before closing time and were welcomed with a 'hey y'all' and anything off the menu. Only when we finished did they continue to close. It felt like an inside joke, it seemed difficult to believe that people could be that nice and polite.

Southern cuisine is especially amazing. I had heard good things from people that had been and it surprised me as it didn't come in the packaging that I was expecting which made it even better. Southern cooking is very homey, it's simple but jam-packed full of flavor. We made sure to try as much as possible from traditional cocktails of sazerac to the sweet deep fried pastries known as beignets (which I'm completely addicted to). The creole dishes such as gumbo and jambalaya were so tasty. We had these a couple of times but my favorite was at a place called Jacques-imo's. For our seafood fix we went to a place called Bacchanal, somewhere that you would never find as a tourist. This recommendation came from a previous n'awlins resident, located on the outskirts of town and standing alone on a block of houses facing an abandoned railway. But by far my best food experience in n'awlins was coming across the wonderful Tee Eva's Old Fashioned Pies and Pralines. This tiny place consisted of a window where you placed your order and there was only room for two tables. Tee Eva only makes pies, all different types. Unsure of the place and having already had lunch we ordered one pie each, hipster dufus wanted the crawfish pie and I the pecan. I asked to taste his and after one bite decided to go back and get my own. That's just how tasty they were. I absolutely can not wait to go back to New Orleans. 

Sunday, 20 October 2013

Werking it

In February this year I managed to get a job and cement myself as a transatlantic museum professional. However, so far all I've managed to do is tell you in Facebook updates that I have gained a new job, but never showed you what. As I approach the week where I say farewell to one job and usher in a new, it felt like the perfect time to do some explaining, along with some adorable photos.

Museum of the Moving Image
This was the job that started it all and was comfortable especially because of its similarity to the BME. Where one was about the music industry, the other is about the movie industry, one has a workshop called Behind the Scenes the other an exhibition called Behind the Screens. It's a fantastic collection that looks at the history of the industry and explores the different jobs that make it up. Sessions and workshops include screenings of classics by the likes of Charlie Chaplin with discussions and movie making 101. It was a great place to get started although it is definitely time to move on. What I'll miss most is gossiping with colleagues in the morning.

Brooklyn Museum 
My next stop is the Brooklyn Museum where I will be the instructor for a program called Meet the Museum for children aged 2-4. This is quite a change for me as it includes art teaching which I've never really done before. I don't have an Art History background so this is a further challenge. However I must be doing something right as the lesson plan I presented at my interview is the first lesson I delivered this week! Below is my colleague Kristin teaching the morning session at the painting I selected by Alma W. Thomas titled Wind, Sunshine and Flowers. We explored colours with a matching game and I taught the children the 'I can sing a rainbow song' (definite learning curve as this song doesn't exist out here). Later we made prints using bubble wrap to mimic the style employed by Thomas. This is more or less the format of all the lessons which I'll have to design on a monthly basis.

New York Historical Society
This job I got back in June, here I run their Little New-Yorkers program for children aged 3-5. The aim is teaching little ones about New York through different themes. We read storybooks that have a link to NYC and then make a craft project based on the overall theme that the book falls into (i.e. Halloween, Spring) or that links in directly to the book. Check out my 3 favourite examples below. This job really keeps me on my toes as I have to create a program on a weekly basis. The best part about this is that there was wiggle room for improvement which will allow me to leave my mark. My plan is to move these sessions into the galleries and add in more art based activities that explore different art processes, all to the delight of my boss. First session will be in November where I'm taking on the meteoric task of explaining Cubism to toddlers...