Saturday, September 28, 2013

Observations Upon Arrival

Triana neighborhood in Sevilla

I wrote the following post the day after I arrived in Sevilla. It's about time it goes up. Much has happened since the Friday that I wrote this, so stay posted for more exciting tales!

Here goes:

20 September, 2013

It has begun. This year of writing and thinking and learning and living and creating has lifted its little wheels off the runway and is in the air.

I just arrived in Sevilla yesterday, and already I have witnessed creative combinations of artistic media enlivening the city. Because my project is to engage in the city's "culture of artistic confluence," this is very exciting. On a narrow, bustling pedestrian street I stopped, entranced, to listen to a beautiful classical duet of upright bass and violin. Further on, closer to the cathedral, two men grumbled to each other because the street music on the nearby corner was too loud for them to play their own. It turns out that the other music was accompaniment to outdoor belly-dancing. Later I saw the two young men fire up their music anyway and start dancing to it with robotic techno moves.

And then there was the cathedral itself, infinitely complex in its baroque attire and Islamic foundations, and standing like a magnet that keeps the city's inhabitants within its field of reach. Old and new co-mingle, as do East and West, in this city. (Not always, of course, in total harmony.)

Inside the Casa del Libro bookstore on Calle Tetuán (where the string duet serenaded passersby), each platform landing of the staircase was adorned with a painting on canvas and accompanied by a poem addressing a book. (I meant to include pictures, but I'm having technical difficulties.) An image of The Little Prince was accompanied by a poem that began "Una manera que tienen los versos / de quedarse en la memoria / como un sedimento involuntario...." ("A way that lines of poetry have / of sticking in memory / like an involuntary sediment...") In these paintings I saw the artistic confluence that is at the heart of my interest in Sevilla for this year. Painting, poetry, prose, architecture, and music all compliment each other and contribute to the vivacity of this city. I look forward to attending and participating in events of artistic confluence, such as the"Fusión de música y textos" ("Fusion of music and texts") on Wednesday at the Casa del Libro.

Since writing this post, I have attended said event, and Sevilla and her arts have begun to open up to me more and more. Stay tuned as I keep you up to date! Here's a sneak peek at the Fusión de música y textos:

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