Three Things That Bring Me Happiness:
1.) The Heidelberg Project in Detroit, MI (make sure to watch the introductory video ~ It’s only four minutes long!)
This 25 year-old project, based in urban neighborhoods of Detroit, Michigan, amazes me. Project founder, Tyree Guyton, grew up in Detroit’s harshest of neighborhoods and has, over time, helped to transform these bleak, skeletal streets, houses and trees into works of art. Bright, multi-hued polka dots decorate the streets, trash cans and the sides of houses. These geometric splashes of color remind me of the children’s book, Put Me In the Zoo, and I imagine Spot (the polka-dotted leopard) pulling his spots off and throwing them into the air to see where they land.
Art spaces are not just galleries and museums. And art is not just something you put into the confines of a frame. It is an empty gas can and fake flowers made into a sculpture. It is discarded toys glued to miscellaneous objects, then made to spew fire or water. It turns the everyday mundane into a source of inspiration.
Through comprehensive community planning, revitalizing strategies like this one have been crafted to bring life, color and hope to urban centers around the nation. This particular project allows adults and children the free and daily exposure to relate-able art. They are asked to form their own opinions and to think about what each art installation means to them.
And this particular project brings people into these neighborhoods. Where once no one except residents would cautiously step, now visitors from around the city, state and country drop by to marvel at its intricacies, bringing a safe and energizing vitality to the community.
…oh…and did I mention I love all of the polka dots???? 😉
2.) Tiny, textured, clay tea cups in earthy colors
…from which I drink my hot tea… 🙂 I must confess: I have a bit of a fetish for tea cups. I had, at one point, a huge collection of them. During a “minimalist phase” I ended up selling/discarding many of them…but how I do love the way they feel cupped in my palms.
3.) Pearl Jam’s “Just Breathe”
This song was first sent to me by my brother-in-law after a painful breakup…something about its simple acoustic melody and heart-felt lyrics causes me to, time and again, put this song on instant repeat….regardless of what kind of day I am having.
Bad day? I gravitate towards the simple, happy whistle in the background.
Good day? I play this and I can feel the sunshine through the picked guitar strings.
Favorite line: “Oh, I’m a lucky man, to count on both hands the ones I love.”
If we could all be so lucky… ❤