Drusilla Modjeska, Stravinsky's Lunch
Co. Clare with a blanket of snow
This is one of those weekends with only a couple of scheduled activities, an introvert's heaven and firmly within my comfort zone, which is exactly what I need at the moment, or so I tell myself. I now own a copy of one of my favourite books, Stravinsky's Lunch by Drusilla Modjeska, about the Australian artists Stella Bowen and Grace Cossington Smith. The same friend who introduced me to Modjeska's work gave me this beautiful edition. It was such a wonderful surprise, and I am falling in love with it all over again. The book is about the relationship between art and life (and love), examining the two very different paths of these two women's careers and personal lives, taking in modernism, feminism, Australian history, and Virginia Woolf's To the Lighthouse.
Life was so busy for the first three months of this year that it feels spectacularly luxurious to sit and read or just sit - I have embarked on yet another attempt at making meditation a habit. The author Natalie Goldberg wrote this piece about struggling to make it a routine, which is encouraging to read for those of us who are too hard on ourselves. My younger sister does a Yoga Nidra style meditation when she breastfeeds and thus builds it into her day. On dry days (of which there have been quite a few lately) I open the French doors in the sitting room and sit on the steps looking at the sea and the Burren and the constantly changing light (the photo above was taken last week, on a very cold day just before spring fully arrived).
And even the work on the house is relaxing most of the time. I have been listenintg to old Desert Island Discs interviews while painting, which has yielded beautiful new additions to my playlist (for instance "Sister Rosetta Goes Before Us" by Alison Krauss with Robert Plant, from an album I had been close to buying several times, but never did. Thank you, Sigrid Rausing.), as well as a heightened feeling of connectedness with others and our shared humanity, which may sound odd to a lot of my friends - I have so much catching up to do; outside work I have been isolating myself, so it is high time to actively connect.