New Orleans: Working & Vacationing-ish

{outside of Tipitina’s there was this communal work of art: a staple and flyer encrusted telephone pole}

I am still processing what I experienced in New Orleans. And I’m jet / time change – lagged. So I’m not really processing. I’m just tired and coffee compensation is giving me a headache. Maybe I am trying not to get a cold.

Hugo and I were in New Orleans for one week (only one week!) and it was the best trip we could have hoped for: the city was celebrating Halloween, the weather was like New England summer time, food and drink were deliciously bountiful, rest was attainable, music was everywhere, and yes one could get their work done.

I am so thankful that the Mexican consulate was able to arrange for us to stay at the Joan Mitchel Center. This is a note for artists especially: Check this place out! If you find a way to utilized this space, do so! It is a piece of artist heaven in the middle of Treme. My mouth was hanging open just a bit when we shown around for the first time. I’m an artist used to just having to make do. I mean I’ve slept in vans, on floors, and atop flat file cabinets. Here we had a pool and longer term residents got their own private studio to work in. There was a huge kitchen (the chef’s studio space) and a communal kitchen. The grounds were kept up nicely… dinner was at 7pm…

And the folks at the consulate AND the gallery people! Just- Wow. I’m bowled over with their generosity. Muy, muy buen onda. 

{Hugo went to art heaven}

Hugo and I were both nervous coming to a new city to show a type of work we’d never dealt with before, but once things got going our concerns quickly dissipated when we figured out what we were doing.

{Pablo’s work station}

Most of my time was spent playing a very unofficial second shooter for a professional photographer {insta} documenting Hugo {instaface} doing his mural painting thing. I was by no means bored. Between Hugo painting, the consulate staff going about their business, the photographer doing his thing, the woman painting the walls, the men installing lights, and of course, fellow hard-working artist Pablo Rasgado {instaface} knocking holes in a wall- I was plenty engaged.

{two unnamed cherubs illuminating the consulate gallery}

Long hours were definitely put in, but there enough leisure time to balance it out. Our consulate hosts would take us out for lunch or dinner at some quality places.

It was amusing to watch people eat food. They would revel in the pleasure of taste, practically dancing in their seats with delight. They say when you move to the city you can easily gain 20lbs in the first month or so if you are not mindful.

At one such dinner, without even knowing what the official local drink was in Nola, I ordered it from the menu. One Sazerac and I was good for the night. To have more than one of those in less than 4 hours is stupid. I’m not that stupid. More appealing than the meh flavor, the drink has a jovial kick to it. At least I felt rather merry and energetic with it’s effects on me.

We were shown around the Frenchmen St. area by a Frenchman for Halloween. He was a riot dressed as Ace Ventura in a tutu and motorcycle boots- the ones you can’t really walk in. That night was probably the best bit of bar hopping a non bar hopper could do. It was Halloween night and just about everyone had some kind of costume going on. The dancing and carousing and  general carrying on was rather good natured. I blended into the masses of freaks as some kind of Barbe-bleue. It was a perfect costume for a old French port town. And a crochet beard is easy to pack! Thank you Irena! Your beard was a hit! An itchy, itchy hit! 😁

{a successful opening}

We survived the group show opening. We survived New Orleans – and there are already plans in the works to return!

So it looks like Papa Legba can help a white woman out after all. Next time I’ll try to sit down and have some black coffee with him.