Friday, October 23, 2015

Almost Ready

Since March, the Natatorium at IUPUI has been undergoing 
the first phase of its renovation.
For a long while, water was kept in the pool to prevent
possible damage from falling tools.
The lane lines were loosened, floating on the water 
all summer. Recently they were removed,
the pool was emptied, repaired as needed, then
cleaned and polished. The diving platforms
were shrouded in plastic like a Cristo installation,
then they, too, were resurfaced, making ready
for the next practice of aspiring divers.

For months, I've stood like a child in front
of a candy store window, watching the tile setters
at their trade. Now the workmen are cleaning 
up the dust of their work, the pool has been refilled 
and will, once again, be cleaned for swimmers,
who will return for their practice sessions
in about two weeks. I can hardly wait.

Monday, October 19, 2015

Clear As Mud

The water flowing from the Central Canal into 
the White River looks as crystalline as one might want, 
but as the sign a few feet away advises
looks are deceiving. 

Sunday, October 18, 2015


After swim practice Friday, I walked over to the Canal.
While a bit cooler, the day was sunny and beautiful.
People were walking, running, cycling and
skating alongside the water, enjoying every moment.
I saw turtles sunbathing under the Washington 
Street bridge, a heron ot two in flight over
the river, and ducks and geese taking a mid-day
siesta. Their naptime brought about a question:
Why were they segregated?
Under one bridge, there was a flock of mallards
dozing and drifting in the water.
Under another bridge there was a flock
of geese. Well, the birds were primarily geese;
a few confused-looking mallards paddled around
as if wondering how they got there and
where were their buddies?

And then there was this guy.
Where did he belong? 
His expression makes him look as 
though even he is a bit confused
because none of the other 
geese look like him.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Another in The Public Collection: Nautilus

When we become engrossed in a book, we are taken 
to another world, visiting places imagined
and real that we can build on to change our world
and to become the person we want to be.

Artist Katie Hudnall has addressed this with Nautilus,
her contribution to The Public Collection.
This bookcase, crafted from materials resourced from
Indianapolis buildings and from crates used to
transport the artwork from old Wishard Hospital
to Eskenazi Health, is meant to evoke
the image of a ship, one that travels our imagination.

This bookcase can be found in the lobby of 
the Fifth Third Bank, just south of Eskenazi Health.
In the curled part of the shell, there is a little room.
Press a button and a light comes on
to illuminate a little bookcase; it is a staircase,
rising towards the light, or books carrying one to the moon.
In itself, that is charming, lending itself
to whatever stories one may care to explore.

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Just a Sliver

Mornings are beautiful, even the gray, rainy ones.
Saturday morning, I left to go to a little
swim meet, and stepped out into a cool day,
with the sun just beginning to nudge its way over
the tree line. It was still inky black
and a sliver of moon rested its bottom
on a wisp of passing cloud, just below the
remaining stars. I stood at the bus stop and marveled
at it all. If I didn't get up early to swim
I'd never have gotten to see this wonderful,
starry morning.

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Big Fish on Virginia Avenue

The southeast part of town, about a mile from the center
 of downtown Indy, has seen a large amount of restoration, 
renovation, and development in recent years.
I had occasion to visit one of the neighborhoods earlier
this week and was tempted to just set up
homekeeping right then and there.

The buildings are a mixture of restored storefronts 
and contemporary architecture. The result is a pleasant
neighborhood of businesses, residences, and
restaurants. For a number of reasons, it has always
been a dream fantasy of mine to live in a place
that was an old storefront with living quarters
just above, much like those shown below.

One day soon, before the weather turns cold,
I am going to get a bicycle to explore
the neighborhood to see whether such a home
would be possible for me.
It's right on the bus line, surrounded by little
restaurants, galleries, and coffee shops.
What's not to like?

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Art in Speedway: Larry Poons

Well, not really in Speedway, but back to the Canal
where the leaves floating on the dyed water made me think
of artist Larry Poons' op art paintings from the 1960's.
The golden leaves floated at different depths,
giving a similar effect as of his "Northern Grave,"
where the colors undulated front to back
on the red surface of the canvas.

Poons, who is now seventy-eight, was one of my
favorite artists when I was in art school.
His Op Art paintings teased my eyes; I loved the
way the vari-colored ovals were balanced and hovered
on the background color. The first one I recall
seeing was green. It just sang to me,
which shouldn't be a surprise because
Larry Poons first studied music at 
the New England Conservatory of Music
before deciding to become an artist.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Mallard on Red Water

From time to time, the Central Canal is dyed 
to help promote a holiday or event. 
On St. Patrick's Day it becomes that nasty,
flat green. It is pink during Cancer Awareness
events. Monday found it an odd, dark 
red for, what? National Butchers' Day? Bleh.
No matter, because the reflections from
the trees complimented the water
and it didn't keep this duck from happily
grooming and bathing itself.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

October Theme Day: Shelter

For the past year, the federal court building has been undergoing
renovation, maintenance and restoration.
Earlier this spring, I found stonemasons grinding out and 
replacing the old grout between the limestone and granite slabs
that make up the surface of the structure.
To protect the sculptures that greet visitors at the main
entrances, shelters have been constructed to protect
them from falling objects, be they stone, dirt, or human.