Sunday, November 19, 2017

Malta and Denver and a little bit of Egyptain Halloween

From the middle of October until the beginning of November, I was pretty much living on an airplane. After taking my students to Rome, I returned back to Alex to squeeze in a day of work. 24-hours later Ana and I caught the red-eye to Malta and later involved a force landing in Istanbul. As my friend Ted said, " long delay is better than a short flight" if you know what I mean.  
Malta was a last minute trip. We told our school we wouldn't be returning next year and two-weeks later we had a couple of job for organization that operates a school a Tbilisi, Georgia and one in Malta. In a unusual twist of fate, both interviews took place in Malta. They went really well and we felt excited by the possibilities of moving to either Malta or Georgia. When we returned back to Alex in a zombie state I met with our director to debrief-basically he asked how the interviews went. He reminded us of what we would be walking away from and that the school really wanted us to stay to help transition the new head of school and teachers next year. We wrestled with the decision for several days and eventually signed on the dotted line for another more year.

A couple of days later I'm back in a car heading to Cairo to catch an early morning flight to Denver. I was invited to talk about punk rock at DU in addition to putting together and hosting a panel discussion on the 80-90s Denver punks scene. Sonny Kay and I are currently working on a follow up to Denvoid and the Cowtown Punks titled: Denvoid 2, The Colorado Krew: Tales From the Colorado Punk Scene 1988-96.    

Denver boasts 300 plus days of sunshine per year-I arrived to 5 days of snow, cold, and gloom with the exception of one blissful afternoon. Glad to see Denver's erratic weather pattern is still punishing the unexpected. I never have enough days to see family and friends, call people, eat at my favorite places, watch the Donkeys know how that goes.

I made it back in time to help the seniors get their haunted house ready for the fall festival. 


Gozo is Malta's sister island. Way more interesting than what we saw on the main island.
Gozo 4eva
Ferry to Gozo

Welcome to Gozo
Gozo is for lovers.
Roll down the hills of Gozo
Near our apt. in Sliema
Gozo the sunshine island
Gozo 4life
Not Gozo,but Sliema
Sliema beach
On the way to Fungus Rock in Gozo
Gozo's gotcha.

The poster

The panel
 Great nieces getting ready for school.
City Park and sun!
More of the same
Walking by a church.
Goodbye America. American Airlines in Chicago went all out for Halloween-workers were dressed in costume and bowls of amazing candy on each counter-couldn't have asked for a better way to be re-routed and for a cheap sugar high on red liquorice and tootsie rolls.
Teachers on the loose.
Best hat award.
So the deal is the Seniors run the Haunted House and the Juniors are the last group to go through it, except it becomes this awful hazing event with eggs, flour, pizza sauce...really gross stuff. But the joke is on the seniors who have to stay and clean it all up. Hope this will be the last year of this lame and thoughtless tradition. Maybe someone comes up with a smart and clever solution.
Juniors with sauce, eggs, and flour.
Good clean fun.
Getting the haunted house ready.
Snoopy and Woodstock
A cool homemade costume.
The creepy red room in the haunted house.
Nothing wrong with a Halloween Dance on Nov. 9th.

Rome, Italy with students

Our annual AP Art trip for the 2017-18 school year was Rome, Italy. Over the past three years, I’ve been developing the concept of IB and AP art centered academic trips for my students. We basically immerse ourselves in the culture and art of the cities we travel to…we eat, sleep, drink art. We learn history, meet contemporary artists, visit galleries, walk through alleys sniffing out street art, taste the local cuisine, take in a concert, or a film…we go in a 100%. Then we step back, reflect, and then ask the hard and serious questions because art, music, sounds, fashion, film, and overreaching culture for that matter are not standalone ideas, but fall under the giant umbrella of visual culture. 

To see our past trip: Click here for Barcelona, Spain and here for Athens, Greece 

No thanks to Egyptair for canceling our early flight and having us miss an opening at a gallery celebrating Rome Arts Week. The good news was that we had an opportunity to walk over to San Lorenzo to sample pizza, people watch, and see some art on the streets. It was interesting to hear the kids comment how they wished they could walk around Alexandria freely.
@Varsi Gallery-installation by Polish artist Sepe-from the exhibit, Sleeping Through The War.
@Varsi Gallery-painting by Sepe-from the exhibit Sleeping Through The War.
Getting around the city via public transportation.
@Museo d'Arte Contemporanea di Roma-see description below.
Description of above.
@MACRO from Cross the Streets exhibit.
@MACRO from Cross the Streets exhibit. The day before we stopped at the Dorothy Circus Gallery who specializes in American Pop Surrealism and we were told about a couple of their artist who were part of the Cross The Streets exhibit. 
Wandering around the Roman Forum looking for a lost student-true story
Swoon @ MACRO Cross the Streets exhibit
 Installation of graffiti hoodlum jumping the fence to a railway @ MACRO. The figure has a strong resemblance to Napoleon Dynamite, I think.
Roman Forum on a fantastic day. The grassy area looks like a great space to play a game of bocce ball.
 Spanish Steps-climb up and head back down to shop til you drop or until the stores close.
My students looking for their lost classmate at the Roman Forum. Sarah where art thou?
A trip to Rome isn't complete without checking in the Colosseum. We were hoping for a lion show.
Confrontational bird looking for a handout.
The Vatican tends to have nice exhibits of contemporary art prior to walking into the Sistine Chapel room.
Group shot in front of Shepard Fairey @MACRO
Human canvas aka suffering for art.
Mickey and Marilyn rolled into one @MACRO
Decks @MACRO
 Crafty ideas what to so with old storage lockers @ MACRO
Revisiting La Dolce Vita. Silvia..
@Dorthy Circus Gallery. Carlo was a great guide in explaining all the works.
Student with the giggles. It could have been the tasty black olive or blue cheese or garlic flavored gelato we had beforehand.
Altar of the Fatherland
 Inside the Vatican-the calm before the storm of weeding through 1000s of people crammed in slow moving stream headed towards the Sistine Chapel.
The small and indoor version of, In Art We Trust @MACRO
 Skate culture meet urban culture @MACRO
Helping a friend in need.
Ceiling of MACRO
Detail of a sarcophagus @ The Vatican
Contemporary art at the Vatican.
Church near Trevi Fountain.
 Sten Lex made these interesting photocopied, layered, and torn images @ MACRO Cross the Streets exhibit.
How much skate culture and street art can you take?