Denise Dances: A Return to Perfect Health - Body, Mind & Spirit!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

"Miracles of Kannon"

One of the most important and popular texts of Mahayana Buddhism, the Lotus Sutra is said to be the last teaching delivered by the Buddha. The lotus itself is a potent symbol of purity and enlightenment in Buddhist thought: From its roots in muddy lakebeds, it grows up above the surface of the water to blossom in the sunlight...the flowers' strong stems hold them high above the water. (Illustrated Sutra of the Miracles of Kannon from the Universal Gate Chapter of the Lotus Sutra. Japanese, Kamakura period 1185-1333. From a handscroll; ink, color, and gold on paper, 1257.) From the Engagement Calendar 2010: Gardens, The Metropolitan Museum of Art (Gift Shop). -- Shoreline East is coming to New London!!! (Denise!...Denise Dances!...2010)


ESSENCE Quotes from Georgia O'Keefe (1887-1986): (Aside: One of America's foremost female artists passed away one year before I moved to NYC.) She created her earliest works, including abstract landscapes of places she'd lived in 1915. She stopped working in the mid 1970s due to her failing eyesight. "Her vision: finding the essential, abstract forms in the subjects she painted." -- from "Georgia O'Keefe: Nature & Abstraction. "Her consistent determination to transform known or recognizable things into painted, abstract entities that express their essence through forms, colors, and allusions..." "She moved to New York in 1918...She began to work...exclusively with oil paint on...larger canvases, and gave up her previous use of watercolor on paper." QUOTES: I had been taught to work like the others and after careful thinking, I decided that I wasn't going to spend my life doing what had already been done. I decided to start anew -- to strip away what I had been taught -- to accept as true my own thinking (1915). I'm going to paint it big so they will have to look at it...they looked because they were just amused me, the idea of getting them to see what I saw. FLOWER ABSTRACTION - 1924.
on the tiny details
within a crocus.
Look at
the crocuses among us.
Color is one of the great things in the world that makes life worth living to me, and as I have come to think of painting, it is my effort to create an equivalent with paint color for the world -- life as I see it.
I never feel at home in the East like I do out here -- and finally feeling in the right place is just unbelievable -- one perfect day after another. (New Mexico, 1929) Sarasota, anyone? No, not Sarasate! That was the ECSO! - DH...I spent much time walking on the long, clean sandy beach -- often picking up extraordinary things that I kept in large platters of water to paint. When walking, I seldom met anyone as it was very early springtime and cold. I loved running down the boardwalk to the ocean -- watching the waves come in, spreading over the hard wet beach. (1922) Still, in a way, nobody sees a flower -- really -- it is so small -- we haven't time -- and to see takes time, like to have a friend takes time. (1925-28) -- I used this quote in 1995 in one of the very first lessons I ever taught, as a UNH student going for my MS in Education, as practice in the evening adult class. The flower? fresh Gladiolus from my parents' garden! -- DH...The flowers she painted were a product of her environment in 1920s New York, where she moved to join her husband. Huge skyscrapers were going up. As a young unknown, she realized that no one would notice the small, life size paintings of flowers. So she painted the flowers big so people would see them. And they still do. (Denise...Denise Dances...2010.) COMING SOON: Wildflower Sketches for Originals and Notecards by Denise Hickey, featuring "Echinacea Purpurea" -- to as well as "Seagulls All Around!"

USCG Dance on 4/16

Free USCG Ballroom Dance Friday, April 16, 2010. Leamy Ballroom, New London, CT. Don't forget to bring your driver's license and show it at the gates! I was saving my back for the Walk for MS on Sunday, April 18. However, rain is slated for Sunday. If not a total wash-out, I WILL walk! If it IS a total wash-out, I would be very disappointed at missing an opportunity to dance and to assist in teaching others to dance during the FREE group lesson (7-8pm) pre-dance. LESSON: Jive! C'mon, people now! It's easy! Learning is half the fun! Once a teacher, always a teacher!!!...* * * :) Denise...Denise Dances...2010. It's the last dance of the season, before starting again in September!

Monday, April 12, 2010

The A**hole Song!

Yes, you heard right. "The A**hole Song." Back in the day, 1990-91, Brookline, MA. Met her at the Ball & Chain where we both worked as cashiers (otherwise known as Stop & Shop). I should own stock in the place! Ya think? Miss Woman became Madam, actually Pam. To this day, her email messages, usually off-color jokes never fail to make me crack up (at the Library!) There was a song we used to sing while driving about town, the town which "loves that dirty water." It was called "The A**hole Song" and it has re-surfaced, to my delight, on youtube. What does "The A**hole Song" have to do with a return to perfect health??? Driving around the city of "the dirty water" and Southeastern Connecticut and dealing with modern day traffic can be frustrating, to say the least. Harrowing? Frustration means stress. And stress means poor health. Anger needs to be expressed. Anger turned inward turns into Depression. It doesn't pay to take your frustrations out on the other driver. Too dangerous. Instead, why not plug into "The A**hole Song?" The other driver will never know and you will be able to vent your frustration in a safe and healthy way, as you sing along to "The A**hole Song!" Wanna give it a go? Go to:

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Alive 'n' Kickin'!

Sunday, April 11, 2010. Last night at the Eastern Connecticut Symphony at the Garde Theater, I enjoyed the music of French composers, conducted by Toshiyuki Shimada. THE FRENCH HAVE A MAGIC ALL THEIR OWN. Stay tuned for a future radio broadcast on 94.5 Fine Arts Radio. During intermission, I mingled with some ghosts of my past. Mr. Michael Talbot, former principal at West Side Middle School in Groton, greeted me at the Champagne Reception post concert, which is common under the reign of Toshi. I expressed my gratitude to have worked with the kids at West Side, if only for a short time. (Can you say, renegade? or, uh, vigilante?) I often refer to Groton as "the place of my blessing." I wasn't having any luck with anything until I ended up at this special school. Special to me, a nightmare to most! Three weeks into my new job, I was ready to pass out at the end of the day. It was a Friday and the school nurse, whose name escapes me said, "I think she should BE SEEN." My sister Kelley came to get me; the principal refused to let me drive home. She took me to Pequot Health Center in Groton, where I received a multitude of tests from the caring staff. Diabetes Type II was eventually diagnosed by another doctor, once again, in Groton, from the bloodwork performed at PHC. I still struggle with maintaining my health today, but now I know the cause and what to do for it. If it hadn't been for being in the right place at the right time, my health wouldn't be where it is today. (Can you say: Coma? Mental Institution? Jail? Dead in my apt?)...My faith in doctors was restored enough for me to seek and find surgery (Norwich) and to attend Joslin Diabetes Center (Mystic and New London) for continuing health maintenance. I learned to eat right at the Pequot Cafe, in Groton. I began my Blog at the Groton Library. I received helpful info from the Business Expo at Poquonnock Plains Park, in Groton last fall. I've had one painting exhibited in the Third Crossing Juried Exhibit at the Hygienic. The "crossing" refers to "a crossing over," in this case, the Goldstar Bridge from Groton and points beyond it. Paula used to say, "Be kind to a widow; you'll have good luck" and she was right! I confided to Mr. Talbot that I changed my career direction: that I had just been accepted at the Mystic Art Festival this summer! (FYI, part of Mystic is actually in Groton and part of it is in Stonington.) I heard him utter something about -- FAMOUS!!!...* * * :) (Denise...Denise Dances...2010) P.S. Also among the "glitterati:" U.S. Coast Guard Band Director Kevin W. Megan and two ladies whom I met at the Thames Club during my "high society" years.)