From beautiful Boise to the bright lights of the Big Apple (and a bit of back home)

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…as you can see, I’m a huge fan of alliteration.

Hi everyone! I’m writing this from New York city, where I’ve taken a bit of a breather in order to fill you in on what I’ve been up to recently. This post is dedicated to all the fabulous people in Boise, Idaho, who I met whilst visiting my brother as he embarks on his final year of college. I made some great new friends, including (but not limited to) the Roger Federer of Beer Pong, a little gymnast with the best somersaults off a rope swing I’ve ever seen, a Kiwi with impeccable taste in baseball caps, a proud owner of three talking tummies, and ace barbecuer Ron Featherstone in possession of some great campfire conversation. These guys and girls (and all the others I haven’t mentioned, but haven’t forgotten) showed me a truly wonderful time. I didn’t get a chance to explore the local art scene (aside from aforementioned Beer Pong expert’s game) but the scenery was beautiful despite being clouded with smoke from nearby forest fires. I also got to see Chris Young perform at the Idaho County Fair which was a great way to finish my trip.

I was sad to leave, but picked myself up a Boise State cap- quite possibly so I can delude myself into thinking I’m still at university too and not steamrolling my way to *gasp*…25. I’m hoping I’ll get the chance to visit again soon when my brother graduates- but apparently he needs to pass Stats first. Unfortunately maths is not a dominant gene in our family, so good luck Scotty.

And now that I’m in New York, the first stop on my (shamefully predictable) tour was the Museum of Modern Art. In all the years I’ve been visiting NYC I’ve never been to MoMA, so I knew it was a must, regardless of how much modern art terrifies me. Amongst a field of pieces that I’m afraid I struggled to comprehend, I picked out some old faithfuls and a couple of new favourites:

I loved these lacquered paintbrushes although I’m ashamed to say I lost track of who they were by. I elbowed my way through the crowds and caught a glimpse of Van Gogh’s Starry Night, which instantly transported me back to A Level art and all that is associated with it:

One of my favourite pieces was Boccioni’s Dynamism of a Soccer Player. I know little of Futurist painting but felt that for something that was produced in 1913, this so beautifully and effectively captures the intensity of sport in the present day:

I confess it took a while for me to decide how I felt about this piece, but once someone pointed out the calf in the centre of the image it suddenly took on an unusual clarity. Note: that is “calf” of the anatomical, not the bovine variety. If you are searching for a cow in this picture then I really can’t help and suggest you jump down a couple of paragraphs to where I am going to talk about cake. I’ve actually been commissioned to paint a Swiss cow soon though, so you may enjoy that. 

Joking aside, for a GCSE exam about 10 years ago I produced a Warhol-inspired print of three dairy cows on a 5ft piece of cardboard, which currently hangs in my aunt’s apartment in Istanbul (I promise this is going somewhere). I loved studying Pop Art at school; possibly because it delivers such a loud message in a way that we as teenagers could relate to. With all the movement’s links to New York it was nice to get the opportunity to see a few pieces, including Warhol’s golden Marilyn, which I actually found quite heartbreaking up close:

I couldn’t resist getting my picture taken with Robert Indiana’s famous LOVE sculpture, that sits next door to MoMA on 6th avenue:

I also made my annual pilgrimage to Magnolia Bakery (less artistic, but no less important). Their red velvet cupcakes are a thing of beauty, although until they start customising them with Maggie and Rusty’s faces on, they won’t be quite as good as Nicole’s.

Another thing I love about the Big Apple is the pavement philosophy lining the streets to the library:

After three years of a Literature degree it was quite refreshing to walk all over Virginia Woolf.

I’m of course missing my dogs, but they are making their presence known from across the Atlantic; every time I pull on a pair of jeans I’m greeted with dog biscuits stuck in the back pockets. Plus I have my surrogate dog-from-home keeping me company out here…this morning Cooper and I were picnicking in Central Park:

He is such an amazing little chap, although he has a strong dislike for skateboards and scooters- which makes things a tad awkward with passing children.

Whilst on the subject of cute dogs, I found this print in a gift shop in Gloucestershire when I was visiting recently-

I’d seen some of Alex Clark’s gift cards before but seeing as Border Terriers and Aga cookers are right up there on my list of favourite things, I thought it would be rude not to bring this home. I also found a set of four Cecil Aldin terrier prints in a Lewes antique shop last month. Trying to hang them was a test to my aforementioned, non-existent arithmetic abilities and took far longer than I care to admit. You can catch a glimpse of them in the back of this picture:

In the foreground is actually the Olympic bouquet- it was so beautiful I couldn’t bring myself to throw it away so I dried it in the airing cupboard and now have it hanging in the office.

Painting-wise, my latest is Riley the cocker spaniel:

On the agenda for the next month or so is a cat, the labradoodles, another labrador and the cow. I’ll try and keep you posted but for now I’ve got really important things to do like tasting cupcakes and Beer Pong practice for my next trip to Boise. Although next time I’ll request that we play with the frozen Cosmopolitans that they’re currently serving at the US Open…

Kim x

16 Comments

  1. Amanda
    August 30, 2012

    Kim,I just absolutely love reading your posts,you’re just so witty,so unbelievably talented and i’m so glad people are seeing you for the incredibly talented artist you are in your right,you seem like such a rare individual-just love the way you dress,so classy and sophisticated and regal,I have 2 young nieces and personally I’d love if they took after you,the way you dress,a university degree and pursuing your great passion and calling being a incredibly talented painter,your love for your family is so evident and wonderful to see,so thank you so much for letting us get to know you better,personally I think the world’s better with someone like you in it,look forward to seeing your posts in the future!

    Sincerely, Amanda

    Reply
  2. Clive Smith
    September 1, 2012

    Hi Kim! Denise just showed me your web site and blog! Loved the pics. I took a picture oh Jess and Kel at the Love sculpture last October. Glad alls well in NYC. Denise is listening to Andy’s match on 5 live! Say hello to your Mum and Dad.

    X

    Clive

    Reply
  3. Anonymous Coward
    September 3, 2012

    Fantastic post Kim! I found this one to be particularly enlightening; I think I appreciate art a lot more when it’s described by someone who knows what she’s talking about. I can’t for the life of me see the soccer player, though (am I supposed to?). Keep these posts coming! Your writing is an experience. I catch myself smiling several times a post. Looking forward to more art, pics, and updates. Cheers!

    Reply
  4. Catherine
    September 6, 2012

    Ah, Magnolia. My ritual in NYC was dance class at Merce Cunningham studios (now closed) followed up by a class-canceling chocolate buttercream at Magnolia. Enjoy!

    Reply
  5. Maureen Stewart-Jones
    September 6, 2012

    Hi Kim, Loved your blog. We visited the MoMa in 2010 having enjoyed visits to museums and art galleries in previous years. Obviously we wanted to see Starry Night and Monet’s work which we loved. Must say though that some of the modern art didn’t appeal and some of it just made us laugh. I’m afraid when it comes to art, dots on a page or groups of squares on squared paper left us cold. But we’re glad we went and it is lovely that you enjoyed it being more of an artist than I am. There was a nice friendly Irish bar across the road though where we enjoyed a drink and the craic. Your paintings are really lovely and I wish you success in this field. Lovely seeing you in NYC enjoying Andy’s matches. xx

    Reply
  6. Shawn
    September 11, 2012

    Boise. Is. Amazing.

    Reply
  7. Maria
    September 11, 2012

    Hi Kim!! I absolutely love your site, I love paintings,my grandma also paints and her favorite thing to paint are animals, especially dogs.Just like you! I haven’t seen such a good of dogs in a while. I’m glad that you liked NYC as much as I did. When I first saw the soccer painting in the MoMA I didn’t understand it either, until my brother explained it to me I told him I understand it, but not really. I also couldn’t resist to take a picture at the LOVE statue!
    I’m so glad you are enjoying another year at the US Open, I’m a real tennis fan and I also love Andy! I saw all of his matches,he played awesome, I also saw you at his matches and you looked gorgeous. I hope I could go to the tournament next year to watch Andy play. The final was AMAZING!!! I watch it from the beginning and I suffered, cried and scream! When he won I was so happy, and I’m sure you were also happy, I loved when you hugged Andy’s mom.Hope Andy wins more tournaments and I hope you enjoy having time with him. I also hope seeing another painting soon.
    Maria XOXO
    PS: Your writing is SO good, i really enjoy reading your blogs.

    Reply
  8. Terri Johnson
    September 12, 2012

    Hi Kim – Just wanted you to know that the Boise State Bronco fans have seen your and Andy’s picture and you are wearing our beloved Boise State Bronco ball cap. You’ve now joined Bronco Nation whether you like it or not! :) Welcome to the club. PS – Congrats to Andy for winning the Gold and now the US Open – good for him – so happy for him. You must be PROUD!!

    https://www.facebook.com/?ref=tn_tnmn#!/BroncoNationNews (go to Bronco Nation News on Face Book to see all of the comments!)

    All my best!
    Terri

    Reply
  9. Christian Harris
    September 12, 2012

    Thank You for the BSU love (cap is going viral) and gratz on the US Open!

    Reply
  10. Grant Clark
    September 12, 2012

    Hey Kim….your brother Scott is a fantastic athlete and role model. My son and I recently enjoyed a day with the Boise State tennis team and he played with Scott. He will never forget this experience.Scott has a wonderful ability with kids. Glad you enjoyed Boise! Come back anytime.

    Reply
  11. Marty Hand
    September 12, 2012

    Kim, such a pleasure to find your site. As a former Boise resident with lots of family still there, thanks for sporting the Blue and Orange proudly. Best to you, your brother and the rest of your friends and family.

    Reply
  12. Scarlet
    September 13, 2012

    You are a wonderful writer! You should totally write a novel!

    And yes, Magnolia cupcakes are so yummy!

    Reply
  13. Dennis J. Smith
    September 13, 2012

    We love Boise too and Bronco Nation!

    Reply
  14. John Powell
    September 14, 2012

    HI – My wife and I are also Border owners (rather owned by two Borders, Jake and Phoebe). I was wondering if you’ve ever done earthdog with your guys. It’s a blast. I’m not certain about the trials in the UK, but if you ever find yourself back in the US with your dogs, you should try it. Check out the AKC site and click on Earthdog. Cheers!

    Reply
  15. Hilary Handley
    September 18, 2012

    Love your blog, Kim – maybe you could turn it into a book….

    You must be very happy and proud right now, rightly so – I think the whole country is sharing that happiness and pride.

    Here’s a cheeky question – what is the nail polish you’re wearing with your NY Cosmopolitan – looks the same as the one at the Burberry show. Hope you don’t mind me asking, it just looks such a nice, versatile shade.

    Reply
  16. Hayley
    October 10, 2012

    Hi Kim, I found your website and blog whilst on night shift searching for animal art to put in our new house! Your work is fabulous! I also have that same print by Alex Clark- my Mum bought it for me because there are always dogs and cats curled up beside our Redfyre, especially now the weather has turned cold!!…….Its more like frozen toes than frozen cosmos up here in Aberdeen! Keep up the good work girl ! xx

    Reply

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