Our resort here on Curacao, Blue Bay Golf and Beach Resort, has added a lot of public art over the years we have lived here. They just turn up with out much fanfare or announcements. Sometimes they have a sign explaining the artist, but not always. The latest is a pretty big chicken! I actually like it.
Feel free to insert your favorite chicken crossing the road joke, but in days like we’re living now, it’s obvious it was crossing the road because it was practicing social distancing. And let’s face it, Chuck Norris crosses any damn road he wants, and no one questions his intentions!
Here is a pretty neat picture of a great egret, sometimes called a white heron. And no one questions them when they cross the road either!
Here is a video of our last time on the Blue Bay Golf Course before the government imposed lockdown. Hole 11 is a tricky one. You need to get your drive to the left side, to avoid having to shoot over the water. But of course, I hit it to the right! But I managed to snug the ball in tight to the pin, for a short birdie putt.
The covid-19 crisis has hit Curacao too, of course. The island has stopped all foreign air traffic, forbidden cruise ships from docking, ordered stores and restaurants to close, and forced grocery stores to implement social distancing measures. Blue Bay Beach has been closed to anyone except residents, and they’ve removed a lot of lounge chairs so that there is at least two meters between them. As you can see from the picture, the place is deserted. We were on the beach yesterday, and there were about six other people. And none were in the ocean.
The featured picture is pretty funny. A golf foursome practicing social distancing! Each one has a golf cart to themselves, and they hit their shots to different parts of the fairway. Perfect social distancing!
We’ve had some nice new art work added around the resort. It just seems to pop up when you least expect it. This colorful cow/bench is one of many on the island, done by a local artist. There are a number of them around the island, at different beaches, and outside various stores.
The ocean was pretty rough – we should have waited until late afternoon when the ocean is generally calmer – so we didn’t really get many shots of fish, but I guess we need to post at least one here! The bay was quite clear, I guess because so few people have been in the ocean for the last few weeks. So, here is a pudding wife, not to be confused with the less colorful custard husband.
We spent an afternoon wandering around downtown Willemstad here on Curacao the other day. Thought I’d post a few pics of the area. It’s a UNESCO World Heritage site. Established in 1634, it’s been cited for its “organic growth of a multicultural community.” It’s got absolutely fascinating architecture, with Dutch, Spanish and Portuguese influences. Many buildings are hundreds of years old. The building pictured in the header of this article houses the Penha store. Wonderfully detailed, it’s a delightfully bright corner at the entrance to the main shopping area.
The cannons pictured in the photos to the left and in the above paragraph, were recovered in 1995 from the Handelskade area of Curacao. The are late 18th century examples of the war machinery needed to protect Curacao. They take aim at the Queen Emma Pontoon bridge, a pedestrian only bridge, that can be moved out of the way so even the grandest of cruise ships can enter the inner harbor.
The town has a very vibrant art community. I’ve showcased some of the artwork that adorns the walls of some of the buildings in the downtown area in previous posts, and this one to the right here is fairly new. I don’t think it was on the wall the last time we came through this particular alley in early December. Just to left of this picture is the studio for one of Curacao’s most famous artists, Nena Sanchez who recently passed away. This particular alley has a lot of other galleries as well.
We have been snapping photos of artwork around the island. Some have been sculptures, while others seem to be graffiti. Pam really likes the one in the header (called the featured picture) of this post, of a couple of birds. It’s quite large and very sweet.
The one on the right here is rather unusual. We are not sure what it is supposed to be, but almost seems to encouraging people to read? Not sure. It is located near Playa Daiibooi at the entrance to the Coral Estates, a lovely gated community here in Curacao. It is very tall, about 12 or 15 feet.
The photo on the left is one of the newer art installations in Blue Bay. It is on the golf course, near the club house. I really like the metal work of it, but we’re not sure what it is supposed to be. They say art is in the eye of the beholder, so do you behold a hippo, or a unicorn?
We’ve been doing some snorkeling, of course, and have seen so many fun things. We’ve explored lots of beaches, some we’ve never been to before. But it seems we see the most exciting stuff right in our backyard beach of Blue Bay. This movie of an octopus is kinda fun. If you look closely as he’s swimming, you will notice one tentacle on the left upper side is noticeably shorter. It has started to regrow, but it’s still quite a but shorter than the rest. He’s a very good size, and was being a bully to a smaller octopus.
Santa Fe has really surprised us with the amount of art that is EVERYWHERE! Every corner you turn, every street you walk, every building you enter, artwork is just there. It makes this city very pedestrian friendly. You can stroll anywhere and just admire the many many works of art.
We started the day by checking out the Georgia O’Keefe museum. It’s a smallish building, with about six galleries. They cycle the works on display every few months. The majority of works on display today were on loan for this exhibition, so no photographs were allowed of the works on loan. We managed to take a few of works that were part of the permanent collection, and were allowed to be photographed. She seems to be have been a bit anti-social… One quote displayed was “I wish people were all trees and I think I might enjoy them then!”
She moved to New Mexico from New York City where she was an up and coming artist. She wrote about New Mexico, saying, “When I got to New Mexico, that was mine. As soon as I saw it, that was my country. I’d never seen anything like it before, but it fitted to me exactly. It’s something that’s in the air – it’s different. The sky is different, the wind is different. I shouldn’t say too much about it because other people may be interested and I don’t want them interested!”
She was a risk taker – coming to a place that was quite wild, by New York standards. She trudged about the mountains, alone, carrying her easel and paints with her, finding vistas that inspired her. A pretty cool woman, and damned fine painter.
Just across the street from the museum, is an education center, that contains her archives, and is a teaching center for students of art to learn technique, use of color etc. It’s a wonderful building, with lovely landscaped grounds with a beautiful old tree out front. I caught the sun peaking through the branches.
After seeing the museum we wandered toward the main square and were struck by all the fascinating buildings we saw. The adobe construction is just cool to see. Love this one of the church. It feels like I’ve seen this kind of church a thousand times in old western movies. And here it sits, still in use!
As we wandered, we took more and more shots of more and more bronze sculptures. It seems no building is complete in Santa Fe without four or five bronzes surrounding it. And some even have them on the roof! How about this dragon surrounding the whole building? Is that cool or what?
After walking around for a couple of hours, we got in the car and discovered a place called Canyon Road – it’s a place where there is – wait for it – a lot of art!! No really – it’s kind of an artist’s enclave. There are loads and loads of art galleries, sculpture galleries, antique shops and outdoor whirly gig displays. We’ll be coming back here tomorrow for a stroll.
We then took a drive up the canyons above Santa Fe. Beautiful homes are nestled in the cliff fronts. It’s part of the Santa Fe National forest and the road leads to one of the local ski hills. Here’s a brief movie Pam took as were ascending the road.