22 June 2013

on being a kiwi in italy

or perhaps just random thoughts.

I have been reminded lately that my blogging has lapsed. I know. But I have been rather busy living life, too busy to write about it recently.

I had the privilege of being invited to the opening of the NZ exhibition at the Venice Biennale at the end of last month. My immediate reaction was "Wow! Exciting" (followed quickly by "What have I got to wear?") This was soon followed by "I can't afford a trip to Venice, or accommodation in peak times... perhaps I wont go". This became "It would have been easier if I hadn't been invited..." at which point I had a huge reality check.

Twenty years ago I would have been totally "blown away" by such an invitation. I'd have glowed with pride and bubbled with excitement for months, even if I couldn't make the trip. Now, with my life being one wonderful day after another, I was daring to wish I hadn't been invited because it was going to upset my careful budgeting? Surely not!

Yes, as my previous blog post shows, I bit the bullet, bought the train ticket, booked the room (in the palace) and went to Venice. It was lovely to be in Venice again, and to chat with fellow travellers on the waterbus. I enjoyed the artworks and marvelled at the wonderful position the NZ "pavillion" was in. But at the opening itself I didn't find fellow invited kiwis particularly friendly. They gathered in groups around the refreshment tables and, apart from the official hosts doing their job wonderfully well, the visiting kiwis whom I had hoped to share time with had claimed their territory and showed no interest in being at all hospitable or friendly towards wandering strangers.

Last night, however, was a totally different affair.

Last night was the world premiere of "The Juniper Passion" (see my other blog post). This truly was a night to be proud to be a Kiwi. With a capital K. There was friendship, cooperation, a wonderful spirit of inclusiveness, and to top it all off a magnificent performance of this amazing contemporary dramatic opera which is built on a part of the shared history between Italy and New Zealand.

I think The Juniper Passion deserves a post all of its own, with an informal review, perhaps. I'll get back to that again soon.

Well done and thank you, talented and generous people, last night you made me very proud to be a Kiwi in Italy.

Today I am grateful for passionate people. 

1 comment:

Pam Young said...

Enjoyed reading this Kay. Yes ... sadly the clique-i-ness of the art world "fraternity" hasn't changed a bit, sadly. I find it such a bore, as have experienced it myself on many occasions here in Auckland.
On the other note ... yes, I can understand how proud you must have felt at the other event.Must have been wonderful!