Archive | May 2007

Hit and run

27 May 2007

Last night on the road we were cut in by a small truck with five sheep in the back. The truck was also towing a trailer containing a horse.
The driver pushed us against the concrete median strip what caused us a punctured tire and we had to stop. It looked like the guy would stop too, because the last few meters he drove very slowly in front of us on the parking lane. But … he remained driving very slowly, long after we were stopped already. He kept going and going. We honked all the time and did light signals.

About 200 meters further on he finally stopped and we saw someone stepped out … he walked around his own car … and then … quickly get back into the car and went!!!
We were unable to follow him.
Fortunately I had written the license plate number of the horse trailer on my hand.
Our front tire was torn, the rim of the rear tire was distorted and the fender was pulled out.

After Frank had installed the spare tire we went to the police station. I wonder if they can identify that asshole.
If this guy had stopped decently and paid us for the tire, then we would have closed the deal, because the damage of the rim and fender was just cosmetic. But now -if they have traced him- we will claim the tire, the rim, the fender and an alignment.

hit runhit runOn the police station they found out the horse trailer was owned by a rental company in Gisborne and now they will search further for the name of the hirer. Well, whatever. I would say; drag him out of his house and start to torture him.
But probably they don’t do such things here.

Gina explains Maori

23 May 2007

If a Maori looks at you, he primarily sees the representative of a long chain of ancestors who are standing behind you. When Gina said that to me I was thinking of that old school video clip of Michael Jackson, where he is followed by a long snake of figurines of himself. Do you remember this one?
Maori are very conscious of the fact that they could not exist without their parents. This is constantly emphasized during the marae ceremonies. These are not really comparable with the ceremonies in a church. From the view of an outsider the ceremonies in a marae looks less strict and formal. More friendly and merry. For example; if it’s a cold outside everyone will enjoy sitting inside at the marae against the walls on mattresses and in the middle is done what should be done. And please not too long because afterwards there’s provided a nice lunch.

Gina explains maori

Marae and mini church together

A Maori has no problem to win a pakeha as spouse or get married ‘in a white family’. It is not seen an increase or decrease of status, like in a lot of other countries. In previous centuries the Maoris were interested in marrying foreigners to bring overseas knowledge in their tribe. But nowadays that advantage is elaborated. Being the white member of the marriage there is no need to adapt a new religion or break with your family, like also is obliged at some religions. Even better: they are pleased to build a tiny mini church beside the marae, if you feel the need to do your own ceremonies.

And then; how blond the offsprings may be, as long as there exists a Maori blood line the child is linked to Maori ancestors. Exactly the same as a “real” Maori child. Blood lines goes beyond skin color. That’s not to say they deny skin color. Certainly not. A person’s race is simply called by name. No politically correctness here, because it is not a term of abuse. You are brown or you’re pink ?! And you have a special hook-nosed? The fact that there is no so-called mitigating term for a person’s race, shows that one party does not feel inferior to the other party. That applies to both sides. Maori are proud of what they are, but being proud doesn’t mean they have anything against the other. This is very hard to explain in the Netherlands. Dutchmen has difficulties to handle the word ‘pride’ if it is used in relation to country or heritage.
At first I thought the word MAORI printed on hats, t-shirts and suspenders was something folkloric, something to sell in the tourist shops, but it is not! Maori’s are wearing it all the time. Can you imagine a white Dutchman in the Netherlands wears a t-shirt with the word “DUTCHMAN” printed on it?
No. In some weird way that’s not done.
At the other hand: Here I cannot explain that in the Netherlands you get frown brows, if you are wearing a patch of the Dutch flag on your clothes. In the Netherlands the word pride (country or heritage related) is too much interpreted as “I’m better than you”.

Vanity press

10 May 2007

vanity booksI missed out the last art contest of this year. More than a week before the closing date I had sent the picture of the ice landscape to Christchurch, but I got it back. With a note attached that my entry had arrived too late (?!)
So, a giant crate of 40 kilo can be shipped to Hong Kong in 2 days, but a letter within New Zealand would take more than a week??? Yeah … right.

A while ago I got a book, called Dreamscape. It contains 40 artists of a certain genre, with the intention to catch the interest of specific galleries and art collectors.
Of course, I’m not stupid. Many requests of publishers of art books already have been flipped through my spam filter. When a publisher emails me that I am his ultimate discovery for their great contemporary art encyclopedia … that happen to have just being in progress, but there is still one spot available … And furthermore I’m told that the previous books have been blockbusters and the artists all became famous …
Little detail is that you -as the ultimate discovery- strangely enough is addressed as ‘dear Clogs. P’ or as dear Lincpat (my digital nickname since the internet was born).
Another small detail is that it will cost you $ 4000
For that amount of money you get a moderate printed book where your images are printed among hundreds of other desperate souls. Yes, artists are also a target group with their own weaknesses.

Dreamscape however, is published in the Netherlands by the man who also prints my giclées. He is the only person I have that much business confidence in to hand over my precious digital files. The difference is; his book is about one particularly style/genre. Art lovers mostly have a particularly style they love. Art book lovers too. I believe that art book lovers rarely buy books with ALL kind of styles, because than the biggest part of that book is filled with stuff they don’t appreciate.

Hong Kong replied

6 May 2007

It had been six weeks since the Hong Kong people had emailed me for the first time. After their cancellation for a meeting, I didn’t want to show any sign of too much eagerness, so I waited for them to re-contact.
This week I received an email back indeed. They asked me if I was still interested. And they wrote that they had organized to get some crates of New Zealand art to Hong Kong to fly on 8 May. I could put on the pallet my stuff too. That was sounding very positively decisive, but first I wanted to get an agreement about my wishes. To get my paintings at the airport was too short time anyway.

A commission of 40% instead of 50%, I think is more than sufficient. In exchange I was willing to pay for transportation costs myself (but of course I didn’t say that), because for me that even turn out better than paying 50% commission with free shipping.
Furthermore, I had raised some business things; including my pet peeve that I wasn’t willing to hassle about discounts to customers. How many times have I heard that gallery owners give discounts and then want to pass that on to the artist(!) In such cases the artist often agrees like a sausage already dangling in front of him. I don’t want to do anything with the favours of a gallery owner to his customers. Selling is his job. Painting is mine.
The next morning I already got a reply … all I asked was okay.
That same afternoon we quickly wrapped up three of my oldest surviving paintings and called the courier. The Hong Kong gallery already put the images on their website.
The only thing now I have been tolerant in … is that I have not a real agreement on paper with a signature.
Dangerous, isn’t it?
hong kong repliedhong kong repliedBut yeah, I know where they live …

In the meantime, I painted these wooden shoes for Gina, wit a Maori pattern: