Lois Reynolds Mead

Art and a pink monkeyflower in a native plant garden…


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Zentrum Paul Klee…

Ponder two words: Renzo Piano

The Italian architect that designed…

#1. The Pompidou Center in Paris. (In collaboration with Richard Rogers.) I loved taking pictures of this building…

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However, I was not sure how much I liked the building itself, plopped down in the midst of the beauty of Paris and all of its formal architecture. My mind gave it a minus grade, most likely because it puts all its inner workings on the outside. (I am perfectly willing to take another trip to Paris to re-evaluate the situation, mind you!)

#2 The Academy of Sciences building in San Francisco. This building is one of my favorites from its living roof of California native plants down to its aquarium. It sits within the nature of Golden Gate Park and has a perfect view of the deYoung Museum. It houses multiple purposes (the planetarium, live penguins, a rainforest, as well as scientists doing their research and work). We visit here often and it gets a big plus from me.

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#3 Zentrum Paul Klee in Bern, Switzerland. Situated so it has an interplay with nature, this building by Piano knocked by socks off with its exuberance and swoop. It perfectly illustrates this quote from Paul Klee in 1902: ” Everywhere all I see is architecture, line rhythms, plane rhythms.” A very big plus from me. That makes it 2-1 in favor of Mr. Piano. (I am so presumptuous to think this matters!)

I linked to a full picture of the building because I did not actually take one of all three of the curves. It started to drizzle and I was balancing my umbrella on my shoulder and trying to hold my iPhone with two hands…if I had only known. At the time I had not made the connection that all three buildings had been designed by the same architect.

We left the bear pit after being unsuccessful in catching sight of the bears. This is the old pit that they sometimes still use, but they do have new digs with lots of vegetative cover and big fishing pools.

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We hopped onto the #12 bus and rode it to its end at the Zentrum.

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This sculpture is taken from a line Paul Klee drew in one of his pieces of art…

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The lobby and cafe…

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Most wonderful of wonderful…the lower area given over to allowing creativity to develop. A whole light-filled space for kids’ art. This building is about the interaction of nature and culture…I could feel it…

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The next post will be about the art in the exhibit rooms…


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Bern, three…

There is one other fountain that I must mention…it was created by an artist named Meret Oppenheim, 1913-1985. She was a Swiss artist who gained early fame creating an iconic image that defined Surrealism. She created this tea-cup and saucer in 1936 but then drifted away from the Surrealists in her later career. She was young, 23, at the time she created the object. Born in Germany but a Swiss citizen, the Swiss are very proud of her art fame.

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She was asked to create a fountain for Bern and it was constructed two years before her death. This fountain symbolizes growth and life. It is supposed to communicate with its beholder. There was much controversy about the concrete fountain that is covered with grass, flowers, and moss. Rick Steves says that the citizens of Bern only like the fountain when it is covered with ice in the winter. However, I found a short YouTube video that seems to think that it has grown on the residents. It is a very interesting video that includes a botanist discussing the plants and growing things on the fountain as well as the issues of how best to preserve it.

The fountain is situated between the Dutch Tower and the Police station. (The police station was originally the orphanage).

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Bern, two…

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After walking to the rear of the Parliament Building so we could see the view and the Aare River (muddy because of all the rain), we continued our stroll down-elevation past banks (lots of them…it’s Switzerland!) and casinos (in this case casino means opera house.)

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Also saw the sophisticated suicide barrier on the bridge…

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Our walk swung over to the center of the peninsula that is Bern so we could enjoy the Zytglogge. I am not an expert on world-wide clock towers, but this one seems to me to be one of the most special. It dates from 1530.

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The street artist was also fun…

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Walking to the rear of the tower puts you in the Kornhausplatz.

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There is the Ogre Fountain (child-eater). Possibly it was meant to scare mis-behaving children.

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We elected to stroll down Kramgasse a wide street that gives the sense of the arcades plus the cellars below that are also retail shops…

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Zähringen Fountain…a bear in full armor…

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The house where Einstein lived in 1905 when he developed the theory of relativity right here in Bern…

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The Samnson Fountain…

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We also walked around Bern’s 15th century Münster (Cathedral)…

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I could not get far enough away to get a full picture so you will have to piece it together in your brain…

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If you live in one of these houses in Bern…

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You get this as your yard…

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One more fountain (there are more than we actually walked past) before we went across the bridge to the BärenPark…of course, it was Justice…

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“Time is the justice that examines all offenders.”~Shakespeare

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(Snapseed app, Image Blender, Stackables, and Vintique)


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Bern..

Bern, the Capitol of Switzerland, was founded in 1191. A roaring bear is the local mascot. It has a beautiful river, the Aare, and lovely, covered arcades for window shopping and strolling even in the rain. A fire swept through in 1405 and after that wooden buildings were banned. The facades are somewhat monochromatic, except for spots of color in the beautiful window boxes and there are polychromatic fountains in the middle of the streets. The train station is a transportation hub so besides two full days of enjoying the city, we had many days where we had layovers and picked up coffee or excellent lunches. There is no bad food in Swiss train stations.
The train station is also a mall…

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(I included these two photos to see if a couple of my friends read my blog…I was thinking of you Thalia and Gail!)
There were buskers and chocolatiers…

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Bears were everywhere…on sewer lids…

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On street sweeper trash cans…

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In parks…

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And real life breathing bears (although we could not see them) who get to fish in their own pond next to the river…

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The sandstone buildings and the prison tower…

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The first fountain we came to was the bagpiper…

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The Dutch Tower…and then back to the other side of the Prison Tower for the Anna Seiler Fountain (she founded the first hospital in Bern).

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The market…

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Sometimes the fountains went to the birds…

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Chess…

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Parliament Square and the Parliament Building…the fountain has 26 squirts (one for each canton)…

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Selected…

One of my iPhone collages was accepted into an art show “Expanding Vision a Contribution to Mobile Photography” at The Arts Center, Corvallis, Oregon. The show runs from August 21 until Sept 28. I posted this collage before, but now it has been collaged to a collage. (I was just waiting to use that sentence!)  Wish I could visit the show, but if you are in the neighborhood I hope you will drop by! Here is information about the show and a slide show of the works included.

Also, links to most of the photographers are listed.

Here is my collaged work…

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My iPhone collage was created from three photos taken while I was in Perugia last October…one of a skyline, one of a gargoyle on the museum, and one of a store with the word Perugia on its sign. Those were combined with Image Blender app and put through some distressing with Pic Grunger app. The original skyline photo was put through Etchings app for a treatment that makes it look like a postage stamp. The printed collage was put on an 11″x 14″cradled board that had been treated with lots of texture. Paper (some I printed myself, some collected),  acrylic mediums and acrylic paint were used to finish the collage.

What an honor! Excitement!

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