Thursday, February 18, 2016

Day 3: LA to Phoenix, February 17

Day 3: LA to Phoenix

THB goes to sleep early, so is up early and at the fitness center (which is actually crowded). Cereal and banana for breakfast, $5 (with tip, not a misprint).

The shuttle takes 1.5 minutes to drop THB at the airport, so that means the trips to/from airport averaged 20 minutes.

Easy flight from LA to Phoenix, THB meets up with DB (from Tucson) and the rest of the Oakland Art Museum tour at SWA baggage claim. 

First stop is the Heard Museum, which focuses on Southwest Native American art. Our visit included visiting the "stacks" and getting some informational docent overviews of the history of the museum. There's a great exhibit on how Native American children were sent off to boarding schools, starting in the 1800s and carrying on for many, many years. 

Down in the stacks:

Early work: pots down "three different ways" from the early 1900s, as examples for tourists 

On a tour of Canyon to Chelly, maybe 8 years ago,THB and DB met a guy who had been sent involuntarily to a boarding school. His story was very sobering.


Note: just one date, they didn't know the birth dates of those sent away to school  

Check-in at the Marriott Residence Inn which is several notches above a Sheraton Four Points: along with a large room is a big kitchenette and a great desk and couch and small table with high chairs for en suite dining. 

Not our hotel: a mosque is right around the corner. Fortunately no early morning call to prayers!

After resting up and unpacking, we spend quite a bit of time at the newly located ASU Art Museum Ceramics Research Center (this is a big week for ceramics in Phoenix, hence the reason for the OMCA tour). Along with a strong collection of ceramics, the Research Center has a great show of photos by Jack Smith of ceramicists on display, and Jack is here along with free copies of his book. In addition to the OMCA group, there's also a ceramics collectors group at the Center: we're merging with them for a few days of touring.

DeStaebler work in the Museum

Akio self-portrait!

The reception includes snacks and drinks, enough that (with the time change) means we're skipping dinner.

From there we saunter a short ways to a gallery opening that includes several artists we'll be visiting on the ASU Ceramics studio tour. THB makes his way through in short order, DB joins him outside and we walk the few blocks back to the Residence Inn. They're serving free beers and snacks in the lobby...we pass, though love the thought!

Book Reviews:
1. The Unraveling: High Hopes and Missed Opportunities in Irag, Emma Sky. Somehow, a young British woman with experience in the Middle East working for NGOs gets embedded with the US military at the highest levels as a political officer (i.e., someone telling truth to power) in Iraq during the period where Saddam is ousted and there's an attempt to nation build. She's co-opted: there's a truism that you shouldn't bother doing well that which shouldn't be done at all. As a reader, it is great to see what the US was attempting and how someone believed it might succeed. Highly Recommended

2. Muse, Jonathan Galassi (novel): cartoonish characters in the publishing business. THB may actually go back and try again, though the chances of that are pretty slim. If you are in publishing (and especially if you are responsible for this book), you should be ashamed and probably entranced. Not recommended

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