EVENTS 2017

 

FEBRUARY  2017

ARTICLE & PHOTO MONTAGES:

FEBRUARY ISSUE OF THE WORLD & I MAGAZINE

"ARTFUL POTTERY: FORM AND FUNCTION"


By Iris Brooks

Photos by Jon H. Davis and Iris Brooks

"We shape clay into a pot, but it is the emptiness inside that holds whatever we want."

-Tao Saying

    Native American seed pots decorated with geometric patterns, raku funerary urns in gem tones, and sun-baked earthenware bowls from Mexico are among the artful pottery I have collected in my travels. To remind me of place, I usually opt for a small, unbreakable object to add to my suitcase: a Balinese batik tablecloth, colorful French Polynesian postage stamps, an embroidered purse from Thailand, and handmade Moroccan slippers. But sometimes a piece of pottery is too exquisite to resist. And learning a bit about glazing and crazing or meeting the potter gives more resonance and appreciation to these fragile yet functional clay creations.


    Admiration for pottery transcends its pedigree regardless if it is Bizen ware (referring to the region in Japan where it is crafted as well as the historic tradition of unglazed pieces likened to "the beauty of the real face" as opposed to the "beauty of makeup"), or Raku (meaning both the unpredictable, low-firing process as well as a style originating in 16th century Japan), or Tsuboya pottery from Okinawa, often shaped into mythical shisa creatures, serving as guardians to protect homes.

ARTFUL POTTERY

"Earth, water, air, and fire: so simple, but so complex."

-Anon

    In selecting an appropriate funerary urn to hold my father's ashes, I am seeking a piece which represents who my Dad was; simple yet sophisticated. I find such a graceful pot, crafted by John Dodero in Jacksonville, Oregon. I choose a sage-hued urn, thinking my Dad was a sage as I appreciate the elegance of the form of this raku glaze, with one-of-a-kind, fine network of cracks (known as crazing or spiderwebbing). In Japan this is considered a piece with wabi/sabi (with a sense of natural expression), since it is not perfect, but the cracks imbue an original character and add an aesthetic sense to the work. Again, I am struck by its similarity to my father, a Doctor of Oriental Medicine, who was a one-of-a-kind character. This artful pottery truly resonates with me.

-Iris Brooks

JANUARY  2017

ARTICLE:

WASHINGTON TIMES

"6 PEACEFUL PLACES IN PORTUGAL"


By Iris Brooks

This article originally appeared in the Washington Times.

Click here to read the full article.

ARTICLE & PHOTO MONTAGES:

JANUARY ISSUE OF THE WORLD & I MAGAZINE

"VISITING VERMONT: HERALDING HISTORY AND HERITAGE"


By Iris Brooks

Photos by Jon H. Davis and Iris Brooks

Discover early Revolutionary War history on an intriguing back roads tour, visit the stately Lincoln family home of Hildene, and stay at the well-preserved Arlington Inn, listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Three centuries of the rich history and heritage in the Shires region (so named since it is has two county seats in two towns or shires of southwestern Vermont) may be explored in any season with a focus on painters, potters, and poets, or the independence of America.


The natural beauty of Vermont continues to lure visitors to a state where billboards have been banned since 1968. (It is not the only state to do so, since Alaska, Hawaii, and Maine also have laws prohibiting advertising on roads and highways.) This lack of visual clutter contributes to the scenic look and feel of Vermont, the Green Mountain state that was once its own country, known as the "Republic of Vermont." As a separate country in 1777, Vermont had its own coins, stamps, and militia before joining the other states as part of America in 1791. This independent spirit still lives on.

-Iris Brooks

This article originally appeared in the January issue

of the World & I magazine.


CLICK HERE TO READ THE FULL ARTICLE.

Excerpted from an article originally appearing in the World & I magazine,

February 2017


Click Here to Read

the Full Article

CELEBRATING  FEBRUARY 21ST,

INTERNATIONAL MOTHER LANGUAGE DAY

WITH THE LANGUAGES LOST AND FOUND FILM

FOR FILM INQUIRIES AND/OR PURCHASES, VISIT THE NLS STUDIO STORE, OR EMAIL

US AT,  NLScreativemedia@gmail.com

MARCH 2017

ARTICLE:

WASHINGTON TIMES

"ROMANTIC RETREATS"


By Iris Brooks

Photograph by Jon H. Davis

This article originally appeared in the Washington Times.

Click here to read the full article.

DESTINATION OF THE MONTH

LONGWOOD GARDENS

KENNETT SQUARE, PENNSYLVANIA

610 388 1000


www.longwoodgardens.org


ORCHID EXTRAVAGANZA ON EXHIBIT

THROUGH MARCH - IN THEIR CONSERVATORY

Photos by Jon H. Davis and Iris Brooks © 2017

ARTICLE:

MARCH ISSUE OF THE WORLD & I MAGAZINE

"MUSIC WITHOUT BORDERS:

Transformative World Music"


By Iris Brooks

Photos & Montage

by Jon H. Davis and Iris Brooks

This article originally appeared in the World and I.

Click here to read the full article.

APRIL 2017

ARTICLE:

APRIL ISSUE OF THE WORLD & I MAGAZINE

"TREASURED TREES"


By Iris Brooks

Photos & Montage

by Jon H. Davis and Iris Brooks

"Between every two pines is a doorway to a new world."

-John Muir, 

Scottish-American Naturalist

This article originally appeared in the World and I.

Click here to read the full article.

MAY 2017

ARTICLE:

MAY ISSUE OF THE WORLD & I MAGAZINE

"ART ADVENTURES IN THE GENIUS BELT

BUCKS COUNTY, PENNSYLVANIA"


By Iris Brooks

Photos & Montage 

By Jon H. Davis and Iris Brooks

"I decided early on to choose as my subject the entire earth, all terrains, all peoples, all animals . . . To know this earth as I have known it is to know a grandeur that is inexhaustible, and it has always been my desire to communicate that sense to others."

-James A. Michener 

ART ADVENTURES


What do ground-breaking anthropologist Margaret Mead, Pulitzer Prize-winning author James Michener, and lyricist/playwright and producer Oscar Hammerstein all have in common? These and many other cultural luminaries have lived in what has been dubbed "The Genius Belt," of Bucks County, Pennsylvania. Writers Dorothy Parker, Nobel Prize for Literature winner Pearl S. Buck, and satirist S.J. Perelman were all drawn to this sought-after destination attracting creatives in many fields. Another visionary among them was architect and iconic furniture designer, George Nakashima, who worked with wood both skillfully and soulfully. His creations may be viewed in the permanent reading room at the Michener Art Museum in Doylestown and on his estate in New Hope, with their arts building celebrating its 50th anniversary this month.

George Nakashima (1905-1990) has inspired architects, furniture-makers, and collectors with both his craftsmanship (revealing the fine grain of the wood, inserting his iconic butterfly joints where needed, and incorporating rough edges of burls and knots of trees as rims of tables and cabinet handles) and philosophy (respecting the tree and its distinct characteristics, working with the natural attributes of the wood, honoring its inconsistencies so the soul of the tree could emerge). Rather than trying to conquer nature and start with uniform planks, he opted for natural edges.  



"There must be a union between the spirit in wood and the spirit in man."

-George Nakashima

May 2017 marks the 50th anniversary of the Nakashima arts building, which is adorned with a large, abstract mosaic created by artist Ben Shahn. Inside a sound sculpture by Harry Bertoia beckons, while other beryllium copper sculptures of his dot the property. 


-Iris Brooks

ARTICLE:

WASHINGTON TIMES

"MERCER MILE"


By Iris Brooks

Photograph by Jon H. Davis

JUNE 2017

CELEBRATION OF THE MONTH

SOLSTICE 2017

JUNE 21

"Turn your face to the sun

and the shadows fall behind you."

-Maori Proverb

SOLSTICE - THE DAY THE SUN TURNS AROUND

Our yearlong journey revolves around the sun–the cycle of light and darkness– illuminating our lives, shaping our days and nights as well as our inner being. On the solstice, the sun reaches its annual highest and lowest point in the sky. It marks the longest summer day and shortest one of the year in winter. 


The word solstice (from Latin) refers to the sun standing still, or the day the sun turns around. More than an astronomical phenomenon, this shift is marked with cyclical celebrations. Feasts and festivals in many lands connote a sense of rebirth surrounding rituals of light and darkness. 


Feasts, fertility, fire, flowers, and fortune have all been part of the festivities celebrating the summer solstice, or longest day of the year. Partying with fireworks may be found in many countries, while welcoming in the summer has sparked specific traditions as varied as climbing Mt. Olympus, stargazing in Croatia, exchanging fans in China, consuming delicacies such as pumpkin squash in Japan, offering fermented chi cha to the Sun God in Peru, dancing in white costumes in Romania, singing the Midsummer Song in Denmark, and masked dancing and drumming honoring Mother Earth (Pacha Mama) for an abundant harvest during the Inti Raymi festival in Ecuador.  


Wherever you are, walk in the light and celebrate. If you want to revel in sound, tune into the International Solstice celebration, "What's New Under the Sun," produced by Charlie Morrow with contributions from all 24 time zones and streamed live at www.solstice24.com


-Iris Brooks

Photo by Jon H. Davis  © 2017

JULY 2017

ORANGE COUNTY ENCOUNTERS

NLS RECOMMENDATIONS

Reflection 

Orange County Arboretum - Montgomery, NY

Dining 

The Grange - Warwick, NY

The Grange features organic fare and garden fresh produce in a rainbow of colors on a seasonal farm-to-table menu with a cultural twist.

Overnighting 

Glenmere Mansion - Chester, NY

AUGUST 2017

ARTICLE:

WASHINGTON TIMES

"NEW YORK STATE ROAD TRIP"


By Iris Brooks

Photo Triptych by Jon H. Davis

RETRO ROAD STOP

Hyde Park, New York

Photograph by Jon H. Davis

The Orange County Arboretum 

Raised garden beds, water features, and walking trails, are part of the offerings at the arboretum within Thomas Bull Memorial Park. Strolling through the garden paths you pass Japanese maple trees and lily flowered magnolia. It is easy to focus on the splashes of color: purple salvia, pink hydrangea, and yellow zinnia. But particularly striking is a rotating granite globe. This sculpture floats in a fountain surrounded with bronze plaques, inscribed with the names of local residents who died in the 9/11 attacks. The garden is a quiet place to reflect.