Archive | August 4, 2013

I Bought A Painting At ‘Laconia Multicultural Day’ + My Favorite Booth In 2013.

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.

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by
Anura Guruge


Related posts:
>> 2013 Multicultural Day: Impressions — Aug. 4, 2013.
>> Shame on Belknap Mill … — Aug. 3, 2013.
>> Laconia Multicultural Day, 2013 … — July 12, 2013.
>> Laconia Multicultural Day, 2013: Program — July 30, 2013.
For all the posts related to 2012 ‘Laconia Multicultural Day’:
++++ Search on ‘multicultural‘ using sidebar search (at top) >>>>


Saad & Hassan Hindal

Art from Memory

Iraqi Artists now living in Concord, NH.


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Father and son, Saad and Al (17) at their tent. The painting on the easel, with the school bus, painted by Al. I like that one TOO.

Father and son, Saad and Al (17) at their tent. The painting on the easel, with the school bus, painted by Hassan. I like that one TOO.


The painting I bought, or at least got. Haven't paid for it yet, though it now hangs right by our front door.

The painting I bought, or at least got. Haven’t paid for it yet, though it now hangs right by our front door.


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THE picture, to the left, as it was hanging in the booth.


They were there last year too. I had seen their paintings and had liked them.

I, of course, stopped again this year, as soon as we got to the Mill. I spoke to the son, Hassan, and told him how much I liked the paintings.

Later on in the day, around noon, I went back to take a picture of the father and son. That was the picture at the top. The father was seated.

I told Hassan to tell his father how much I liked all the paintings, but the nude in particular and how I would buy it if I had the money.

Hassan translated. The dad told him something back, and both their faces lit up in smiles.

He tells me that his Dad has said: ‘Take it. Pay when you have the money‘!

I was shocked. They didn’t know me from Adam. That was an amazing gesture. There was no time period mentioned. Just unconditional goodwill.

With close to 38 years of marriage experience under my belt, I am savvy enough to know that you don’t buy a painting, especially a nude, without at least mentioning it to the wife. So, I explained that and we left. Devanee was with me and she was amazed.

When we told Deanna, we discovered that she too had seen the pictures and had liked that nude. Bingo. She too was amazed at this amazingly generous and brave gesture. She wanted me to get it.

So I went back and told them that I would come back at 4 pm, when the activities concluded. I wanted them to have it on display as long as they could. I think they were kind of surprised.

Just after 4 we all went to pick it up. Saad, in conjunction with Hassan, explained to us what the symbols meant. Some of them, like the cats and the 2nd from top symbol on the thigh denote good luck. Her lips are sealed about her prior life — but she is not a ‘virgin’. She is dreaming of another man. The fish skeleton and the whole fish indicate before-and-after.

It is vividly bright, very evocative, strangely compelling picture. We all love it.

I plan to pay for it at the end of this month. To be fair, it is not much — and many would find it amusing that I actually don’t even have that much in liquid cash. It is the first ‘original’ I have bought in decades!

We are truly honored that Saad trusted us and of course, we will not let him down.

Moreover, he now has a AVID supporter for life. Of course I am going to promote their work.

Not only do we like their art, we think they are remarkable people.

They have been living in Concord for 3 years. Hassan goes to highschool there. Saad has three other children, another son and two daughters.

We plan to visit their inhome gallery and do a longer interview. Also take some more pictures.

So stay tuned.

IF you are interested in their work, in particular their paintings, contact me (see sidebar) and I will put you in touch with them.

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Their trust and generosity reminded me of an incident from 44 years ago, i.e., 1969, which also involved a person from the Middle East. I had just started at ‘Mill Hill’, the private school in London I was consigned to when I turned 16. There was a fair number of foreigners at ‘Mill Hill’. Most of us, who were new at the school and were foreigners had a fairly torrid time from the locals. But we weathered it. We were allowed to walk down to Mill Hill village three or four times a week. I was at the village and was buying an ice cream when I saw one of the other foreigners. He was older than me and bigger. He didn’t speak very good English at the time and I knew that he wasn’t too happy. On a whim I asked him if he would like an ice cream. He, of course, wanted one. So I got him one and handed it to him. It was just a cone. When he took it from me, I could see tears in his eyes. I asked him what was bothering him. He replies: ‘I have been in this country four months now, and this is the first thing somebody bought for me‘.  Wow. I really didn’t know how to react. But, I can still remember that incident. Well yesterday, the shoe was on the other foot. I felt like the young man receiving the ice cream.

‘Laconia Multicultural Day’ (a.k.a. ‘Festival’): Saturday, August 3, 2013 — Impressions.

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.

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.
by
Anura Guruge


Related posts:
>> Shame on Belknap Mill … — Aug. 3, 2013.
>> Laconia Multicultural Day, 2013 … — July 12, 2013.
>> Laconia Multicultural Day, 2013: Program — July 30, 2013.
For all the posts related to 2012 ‘Laconia Multicultural Day’:
++++ Search on ‘multicultural‘ using sidebar search (at top) >>>>


Click to ENLARGE.


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The ‘Laconia Multicultural Day’, per my definition, is ALWAYS good, always uplifting and always rewarding. PERIOD.

So, per that definition, the 12th celebration, yesterday, Saturday, August 3, 2013, was GOOD. Period.

It is a joyful, bustling event for Laconia – a town desperately in need of cheers. As ever I applaud the organizers and sponsors of this event for their commitment, vision and lets face it audacity. You do good. Thank you. Kudos.

That this year’s event had to be held a month ahead of normal was unfortunate and it now transpires that this was all due to the crassness and greed of the Belknap Mill and those that run it — and I dealt with that separately. A pox on them.

Though there were lots of tents and plenty of ‘carnival’ atmosphere and aromas wafting around, you couldn’t help but notice that the crowds were noticeably down from the last few years — and I have attended every single one of these exemplary ‘DAYS‘. I had hoped that the Summer (as opposed to Fall) date would attract some of the tourists and out-of-towners. That did not appear to be so. One of the organizers complained that she didn’t think that the event was advertised enough. I can’t comment on that, really. I did see it in the ‘Sun‘, I think — but we went looking for it since it is one of our ‘must attend‘ events of the year.

But, it was fun. Everybody, as ever, appeared to be having fun and that, in the end, is all that counts and what this ‘Day’ is all about. Bravo.

I do not know the details, but it is possible that the earlier date interfered in signing up some of the entertainment.

The two headline acts, as far as I could tell, were the African balafon ‘Balla Kouyate‘ and the Puerto Rican ‘Edwin Pabon y Su Orchestra‘. There was, of course, also the ever impressive ‘Odaiko Japanese Drummers‘, but to be fair, they are now becoming somewhat of a staple at Laconia also having performed, magnificently, in 2011 — and as I recall other years. They were good. There were also three Asian girls that danced, fleetingly. Maybe that was the ‘Bhutanese Dancers‘. They were alluring. But, it was a brief act and did not get a proper build-up or even introduction.

‘Balla Kouyate’ and ‘Edwin Pabon y Su Orchestra’ were both class acts and acquitted themselves with credit. They did not have the crowd stomping or totally captivated, but they made sure we all realized why we were there. So that was all good.

Now as for the ‘Crystal Singing Balls‘, all I can really say that it was totally the wrong venue. It was like listening to pain dry and given the lack of auditory stimulation as exciting as watching somebody stir paint — which, alas, is what it does look like. I am sure that in a cozy, intimate room, this would have been quite a show — with the balls buzzing. But, in an open venue, with no reflective sound, the single mike really could not do this justice. Whoever booked this act should have thought about it. They had some performances inside the Mill. This should have been indoors — possibly with the sound broadcast outside. Kind of funny. Yesterday, at the event, I was reading a magazine article about Bose — who invented the eponymous sound systems and speakers. His fundamental breakthrough was recognizing that at most auditorium-based concerts 80% of the sound heard by the audience was reflective sound! That was the problem here. No reflection. No sound. I felt bad for the lady. I walked up to the table. You could hear the glass ring. Never mind.

It was not the greatest of these ‘Days’. It was, overall, low key. Even sombre — though there was no need for that.

I gather that in 2014 it will be back on the 2nd Saturday of September. That is good. So here is the good news. It should not be too difficult next year to better this year’s out-of-cycle event.

P.S., Since I am on this no-carb diet, I did not, per usual, check out all the food tents — since all of them tend to be carb-heavy. So I really can’t comment on the food. I did have some lamb at the very end. They were selling lamb sandwiches for $7. I asked them to give me $5 of just meat without the bread. They did. It was OK.

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