Monday, July 30, 2012

Bugs around San Miguel de Allende

Just recently I was at my casa in San Miguel de Allende and I was amazed on the number of Volkswagen Bugs around town.  This one above certainly had some character to it just like the many colorful facades you see around town.
 Love the white leather interior.

 Another Pink Bug and it's the Pink Panther!
 I particularly like the tw0-tone action going on with this silver and blue Bug.

 And check out the decal!  BURRARI!  Get it....  Burro-Farri!  I wonder if it really is a "green" Bug and runs on Burro Manure....
 Another two-tone number.  I think the fenders look pretty nice with the accent color.
And then I saw this poor little Bug over in the San Antonio area.  Does not look like he had been out on the town for some time.
It's great seeing the oldies come to life and I did see plenty of new bugs that are still being made in Mexico in the "old style."  
Just think what the people in town would think if they saw the VW Bug that the two Huichol Indian Families had embellished with over 2,777,000 beads that is presently on display at the Denver International Airport (I wrote about that on June 6th. If you missed it, please check it out.)
Viva la Mexico!

Friday, July 20, 2012

Continents Apart

One of my favorite artisan's, Tomasa Gonzales Sanchez, lives in Ocumicho in the mountains north-west of Uruapan in the state of Michoacan.  I have been collecting Tomasa's and the family's pieces for years and whenever I visit their home/workshop, I never leave empty handed.
I bought this candelabra decorated with naked men and women years ago and I just love it!  The artisans of Ocumicho have a wild imagination and often there is a devil or some kind of demon thrown into the mix.

My friend, Paco Cardenas who owns the best bakery (La Petit Four) in San Miguel de Allende, recently traveled to Oslo, Norway.  He spent some time at the magnificent Vigelano Museum and Park.  It is the world's largest sculpture park made by a single artist, Gustar Vigeland.  It consists of over 200 sculptures of his lifeworks.  This 17 meter high monolith has 36 figures on it.  

Check out their website: 

I know that the residents of Ocumicho have never ventured very far from their little village and I would guess that Vigeland never traveled to this remote spot in the state of Michoacan but the similarity of both these works is spectacular! 

Monday, July 16, 2012

Buenos Aires Pizzeria in Denver

One of my favorite places in Denver is Buenos Aires Pizzeria in downtown Denver just east of Larimar Street on Twenty-second Street.  Why?  For their delicious empanadas!
The decor is simple with a lot of memorabilia from Buenos Aires and Argentina.  Most of the time, the owner, Francis will greet you at the door.
This is the reason I go to Buenos Aires.  The empanadas.  My favorite is the Margarita (cheese, fresh basil and tomato).  My other empanadas of choice are the chorizo (slightly smokey flavor) and the blue cheese and onion.  Each filling's pastry is made in a different shape.  But I would be hard pressed to identify the twelve or so that are offered on the menu.  Two are plenty for me as an entree.  Many times I stop by their place on the west side of the restaurant and order a few to go (asked that they do not heat them up).  They make for a wonderful dinner with a salad or cut them in half and serve them at your next cocktail party.  Make note that they area closed on Mondays.
Just a block from the restaurant is this wonderful facade with "Find The Time To Take A Joy Ride!".  It just sang to me (as you would have guessed if you had read my previous post on my new bike).

Check Buenos Aires out.  They also offer pizzas, salads, sandwiches and really good gelato (the chocolate and pistachio are particularly good!). 

1319 22nd Street
Denver, Colorado

(there is a parking lot across the street from the restaurant)

Thursday, July 12, 2012

More art at the Denver Botanic Gardens

 On my last post, I wrote about the bamboo art installations at the Denver Botanic Gardens.  The water lilies were just as spectacular.  It had rained the night before and the morning sky was still overcast with a little bit of the sun starting to poke through the clouds.  The lighting (and shadowing) was pretty magical.  It was like the lily moved to create the small ripple around its stem.
This big lily pad looks like something from outer space sitting on a black and white dental x-ray.
 This pale purple and white lily looks almost transparent.
 Lily Pulitzer at its best!!!
Full of bees, I love the deep magenta leaves with this exploding pink lily.  Just think if I had a pair of waders what kind of trouble I could get into!

Monday, July 9, 2012

An explosion of Bamboo at the Denver Botanic Gardens

 The Denver Botanic Gardens recently unveiled the new Bonsai Pavilion and Tea Garden.  As part of the celebration, large site-specific art installations in bamboo have been erected.  Two artists were featured and I particularly liked the works by internationally-known artist, Tetsunori Kawana.  This piece is right when you enter the gardens.  Titled "The Shape of Fundamental Energy II - 2012".  It reminds me of a big dust devil that I would see in the Arizona desert. 

Titled "Culture Current" - 2012, this looks like the big blades of grass flattened by a big wind and rain storm.

I love the lily pond in the front of this large piece.  I think I would title this, Monet meets Alvar Aalto!
This makes me think of the fabulous surfing movie, Riding Giants.

With the steam coming off the water and the deep yellow yarrow in the fore-ground, I just love how the bamboo planks are rolling like hills in the background.

Take a morning off and check out the art.  The installations will be on display up to November 4th.  I will do another photo shoot of the exhibit once Denver see its first snow.  I think that will pretty spectacular to see.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Cruising in Style

I just had to share with you the wonderful and beautifully embroidered dish towel that my friend and biking pal, Jennifer, made for me for my birthday!  I love Mexican folk art, especially Day of the Dead pieces.  The dish towel was right up my alley,
My new cruiser bike is bright, bright yellow with a detachable wicker basket and I have a hot pink and white bike helmet. Do you see any similarity between my bike and the embroidered one?
Jennifer tried out my bike after a lengthy bike ride and it was then she decided to give up her vintage one-speed, heavy, heavy Schwinn Cruiser for one like mine but in apple green.   You certainly can see us coming and just yesterday we cruised for about three hours and covered 18 plus miles.

And talk about Day of the Dead and biking...  This man delivering newspapers on his bike is  one of my favorites. I bought him in a great little folk art store in San Miguel de Allende years ago.  It is by Saulo Moreno who has brought this form of folk art to new dimensions.  He uses part wire and part paper mache and then paints it with such bright colors.

Even Jose Guadalupe Posada showcased a bunch of bikers young and old.  

So if you see two ladies, one on a bright yellow bike and the other on a bright apple green bike cruising around Denver, you will know it is Jennifer and me! 

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Happy Fourth of July!!!!

Happy Fourth of July everyone!
It is a special day for me too, 
it's my birthday.

 This was the birth announcement that my parents sent out a many years ago ....
Can you believe that I was a premature baby?  It is a great day to have a birthday on.  Unfortunately most of the nice restaurants are closed on the fourth.  SO that is just one of the many reasons I celebrate the whole month of July!  Or I make sure that I am out of the country where everything is open on the fourth.
As I did when I was young... shuck a bunch of fresh corn, throw some steaks on the grill, cut open a big, juicy watermelon and celebrate in style.   A few cold beers and a big pitcher of margaritas wouldn't hurt either.  Happy fourth of July! 

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Trinitate, a great ceramics store in San Miguel de Allende

Trinitate is a wonderful store in San Miguel de Allende that took over the old La Capilla space just behind the Parroquia Church.

The range of planters, pots, dishes are endless.  And I particularly like the glazes that they use on their ceramics.  There are various pieces of furniture, some art and other accessories in the shop along with a variety of roofing tiles.

Not having a traditional home, I do enjoy the simple and pleasing table setting.  I do go nuts over new plates and I have to rein myself in when I see something that I like.  I simply have run out of storage space for any additional table settings.  But you never know...

I have a few pieces of Trinitate ceramics that I had bought over the years.  One of my favorites is a handsome, very sleek white pitcher that is shown on the center,  left side of the photo.  It is excellent for sangria and it pours beautifully.

Wouldn't this collection of green plates be wonderful in a mountain home?

You can find Trinitate in San Miguel on Cuna de Allende No. 10, just half a block from the main plaza, the jardin.   There are two other stores located in Leon (where the factory is) and in Mexico City in the Colonial Polanco area.  I find many of the pieces well priced and a good place to find a gift or two.  Now only if my suitcase was bigger...