Tag

Boise

Bon Temps Le Boi — My New Perspective

By | Bon Temps Le Boi

One of the nice things about the time we spend in New Orleans is that I never run out of things to write about. Returning home to Boise feels like maybe I have nothing new to say — but that’s not true. It’s just that I lose my perspective wandering in the forest of familiarity.

Since we returned home this time I’ve been thinking of how I might view my life in Boise through NOLA-tinted glasses. Through the “Bon Temps Le Boi” lense, if you see where I’m going.

In New Orleans we focus on the celebration of food, art, music, and the creativity, originality, and humor with which people consistently express themselves. Last I looked, we have all of those things in ample supply right here in little ol’ Boy-see, Idahome.

Mike Chambers at Tomas Montana's exhibition

So, Mike and I are recommitting to celebrating the art-filled life we have available to us right here. We are starting by getting out as much as possible and participating in what Boise has to offer. Like this week: First Thursday in June…

We began our evening at Gallery 518 where we saw the exhibition ‘everything needn’t always be something’ by Tomas Montano. It is something.

Tomas Montano's Boise Weekly Cover
“Rosabel” by Tomas on the Cover of the Boise Weekly

Melissa and Tomas

Then we dropped by the Art Source gallery to see Ann Sorenson’s work,

Ann Sorenson and Melissa Chambers @ Art Source

including her watercolor “Bridge to Boise”….

"Bridge to Boise" by Ann Sorenson

And while there happened to meet an unexpected, and charming character, Randy B. Fowler.

Randy B Fowler and Melissa Chambers@Art Source

On our way to Freak Alley we ran into Colby —

Colby talking to Melissa Chambers

the guy who started the freak ball rolling when he drew all over this door:

image

I’m glad we live in a city that doesn’t just tolerate, but actually celebrates street art.

Freak Alley wall

Mike Chambers in Freak Alley

There was even some live music on the street, like the folk/pop songs of Fiona Luray and her partner Lettie who were playing out in front of Artisan Optics.

Fiona and Lettie playing on First Thursday

Our last art stop of the evening was Evermore Gallery where we met Samuel Paden the featured artist,

Sam Paden and Melissa Chambers at Evermore Gallery

Sam Paden's exhibition postcard

Melissa Chambers and Lawrence Manning at Evermore Gallery

and ran into several friends, including Lawrence Manning, who told me he and Betty Mallorca are renovating another building in Nampa in addition to their current home and gallery space, Track 13. I guess we’ll get to include Nampa in our new perspective.

All that art walking and talking made us hungry so we headed to Old Chicago for a bite afterwards. It might not have been Oysters Rockafeller or Crawfish Ettoufe, but the Jamaican Jerk chicken wings I had hit the spot nonetheless.

Chicken wings at Old Chicago

Art, music, unique characters, and food. I think Boise’s got it all.

Bon Temps Le Boi!!

Enough IS Enough!

By | My Artist Home

I can not remember a time when I went without. I can not remember a time when I did not have more than I needed. I have never gone hungry. I have never gone thirsty. I have never been too cold, or too hot, for too long. I have always felt safe, and confident of the goodness of the people in my world. And I have always had more than enough of everything I could possibly ever need.

Way more.

Enough is Enough

In fact one of the many gifts of my life has been the largesse of the material world. Maybe not in coin, but most definitely in goods. I have always been able to “turn a sow’s ear into a silk purse.” I can find it second hand and make it into something Anthropologie would charge you beau coup bucks to own, and as a result I have accumulated way more than I will ever be able to use.

I know I am not alone in reaching this stage in our lives when we gasp “Whoa Nelly, enough is enough!”

Enough is Enough

How did this happen? Wasn’t it yesterday that everything we owned could fit into our backpack?. . . Car? . . . Studio apartment? Can’t we blame this on the kids? Didn’t we accumulate all of this stuff in order to make a home for them? And what about the fact that I am an artist? I need this stuff as raw material for art — don’t I?

Enough is Enough

I have moved house many times, and every time I’ve moved I have purged and donated, recycled and thrown away tons of stuff. I do it as I’m packing and I do it again as I’m unpacking. This latest move is the first time that we are actually “downsizing” however, and that means I have a much smaller house in which to try and make everything fit.

Enough is Enough

It’s not working.

Enough is enough

Yes. This is my garage.

Enough is enough

And this is the storage room I’ve renamed the butler’s pantry/monument to materialism…

Enough is enough

but which is in fact an embarrassment of riches.

Enough is enough

If there isn’t a Twelve Step program for this kind of problem, there should be. I admitt I’m powerless over my ability to accumulate more than I need. I’m willing to take inventory. And I’m ready to give it back.

Most of it.

Well, a lot of it anyway.

When we moved out of our last house we had a driveway sale, and as the day wore on we switched our signs from “REALLY” “CHEAP” “STUFF” to “FREE” “STUFF,” “REALLY!”

Enough is enough

I’m thinking I need to do that again at our new place.

Enough is enough

Soon!

Boise International Market Burned Down

By | Tarpage

The Boise International Market has been destroyed by a kitchen fire.

image

I’ve been sitting here with my fingers resting on the keyboard trying to figure out how to say what I am finding it very hard to find words to express. I’m not even sure why I feel so personally bereft by the black hole which has replaced the colorful, vibrant, inspiring place that was the Boise International Market. I just know its existence had made me happy, and hopeful. It helped me believe that I live in a city which is opening its heart and way of life to other cultures — to an appreciation for different foods, styles of dress, music, visual art, and above all, the people themselves who share their spirits with us through all of those things.

The Boise International Market was the inspiration behind my design for the traffic box on the corner of Curtis and Edson. I created a 4′ x 10′ tarpestry covered with ethnic motifs inspired by the patterns I saw on clothing in Thara Rita’s shop, and upholstry in the seating area of The Goodness Land.

image

I enjoyed a lovely pot of tea drunk from a cup of my choosing at Joyful Tea, and had coffee several times from Kahve Coffee. But I didn’t take full advantage of all that the Market had to offer. My plan was to eat at all the restaurants eventually. Of course that was the plan. But I forgot that everything changes and it doesn’t always work out that what I want will be there when I’m ready for it. I had to be reminded yet again that “just doing it” is the only way to ensure I get it done.

There is a site called gofundme.com where you can donate to the International Market Family Fund to help raise money for the individual vendors. We need to do everything we can to assure that places like the Boise International Market and especially the people who make those places happen know they are valued. Because a community which does not express the happy, hopeful, inspiring diversity of life – like the Boise International Market, is not a place anyone would want to call home.

(Just doing it!)

I look forward to the rise of this phoenix from the ashes.

Making a Splash at Reel Foods

By | Tarpage

image

The Fish Tarpestries are up!

image

Terry Burkes and I met at Reel Foods this morning and put them up together.

I’ll be adding a few more velcro straps here and there to help keep them a bit straighter, but they look awesome — if I do say so myself!

image

You know what else looks awesome?

The totally fresh seafood at Reel Foods.

image

After we finished installing the tarpestries, Terry and I were treated to some wonderful Sushi — we had the Boise River roll with smoked trout. And, I am very impressed by, and can’t wait to try, the variety of oysters they offer. Chef Mark thinks the Steamboat oysters will charcoal grill nicely — just the way we loved them in New Orleans!

image

Hungry yet? (Jeez, I am!)

Well, you should go to Reel Foods on Capitol Blvd. and check them out…

image

the fresh seafood, AND the Fresh Fish Tarpestries!

Open House!

By | My Artist Home

We’re having an Open House on Saturday, June 20th from 11:00 to 2:00. If you’re house-hunting I hope you’ll come by so you can actually be IN the space and really experience what a cool house it is! Pictures may be worth a 1000 words, but this is one time that 3-D, rather than 2-D, really makes a difference.

I am a visual thinker. I’m good at going into a space, stripping it down to its bare bones and then overlaying my vision of what it could be “on top”.

Looking at floor plans and arranging my stuff within them is one of my favorite things to do. Since we’ve begun the process of selling our house I’ve spent more time than I care to admit looking at photos of places we might buy once this house is sold, and figuring out ways I could make them work for our needs.

We have something like 25 photos of our house on the “virtual tour” but if you are like me and you are trying to understand the arrangement of the rooms within the 3447 sq. ft spread over 3 floors you might be having a bit of difficulty piecing it together.

So, to make it easier for you between now and the Open House, here are some sketches of our floor-plan, as well as photos of “transitions” between rooms which you won’t see on the virtual tour:

image

You enter the house on the main floor. The front door faces South. The kitchen faces East and gets lovely morning sun, the bedrooms face West and the one in the Northwest corner looks into the backyard through the leaves of the plum tree right outside the window.

image

(The front door on the South side of the house, and a peek into the hallway.):
image

(Standing in LR/DR facing into hall between main floor bedrooms):
image

(Standing in that hall looking into the NW bedroom with the view of the back yard. That’s a built-in linen cupboard between the painting and the bedroom door.):
image

(Standing in the hall looking into the NW bedroom, the “study” and the living room.):
image

(Stairs to the 2nd floor are in the center of the main floor off the little hallway between the bedrooms. You can see into the “study” on the left side.):
image

(The view from the “study” across the landing into the kitchen.):
image

(Looking from between the “study” and the kitchen down the stairs to the basement.):
image

(Looking from between the “study” and the kitchen the other way, down the stairs to the Butler’s Pantry and the back door.):
image

(The Butler’s Pantry is to the right of the back door, on the landing between stairs down to the utility room, and up to the main floor.):
image

(Standing in the kitchen looking back toward the LR/DR.):
image

image

The 2nd floor rooms are on the East/West axis. I use them as studio spaces, but they would make great guest rooms, or bedrooms for kids.

(The view into the room on the East side.):
image

(The view from the room on the West side looking back down the hall to the room on the East side.):
image

(The room on the West side.):
image

The basement is basically an entire house unto itself. It was Logan’s apartment while we were a Certified Family Home and has a legal egress which we had installed in the bedroom.

image

(The bedroom also has a really cool “nook” which we built shelves in and which Logan used as a “book nook.”):
image

image

(There’s a room off the utility room which we use as a work room. It has built in storage on the South wall and with a little TLC could be converted to a 6th bedroom.):
image

image

image

(We also have a storage room under the stairs which I call the “holiday room” since that’s where I store all my Christmas, Easter, and other seasonal decorations.):
image

All of the above — I know, I know, I’m risking overloading you with visual information — but, all of the above should help fill in the inevitable gaps in any virtual tour of less than 50 pictures.

If you need more than this, then for heaven’s sake COME TO THE OPEN HOUSE ON SATURDAY BETWEEN 11:00 AND 2:00!!!

I need a nap.