BY JONI TAKANIKOS
This is not the first time I have landed at the quantum field intersection.
“Quantum entanglement,” according to Wikipedia, “is a physical phenomenon that occurs when pairs or groups of particles are generated or interact in ways such that the quantum state of each particle cannot be described independently of the others, even when the particles are separated by a large distance. Instead, a quantum state must be described for the system as a whole.”
I am writing this entry from the East Coast—Brooklyn, New York—in the neighborhood of Fort Greene. I arrived here the evening of June 30, and the next day ventured to the Brooklyn Museum to see the magnificently curated special exhibit “Georgia O’Keeffe, Living Modern.”
I love this quote, found on the exhibit literature, from her longtime friend, Frances O’Brien: “Georgia O’Keeffe has never allowed her life to be one thing and her painting another.” The exhibit was very much an illustration of her life. It even included her clothes, which she carefully crafted herself.
Moving through the rooms that held iconic images of her, witnessing her strokes of paint on the canvas and stitches in her garments, I felt Georgia’s presence. I was traveling through time and space looking out of her eyes, moving from city to desert and from young to old. My daughter Jasmine and son Max, both Brooklynites now, were with me on this journey, and we were all profoundly moved by the experience. We left the cool confines of the museum and wandered next door to the Brooklyn Botanical Gardens. It was late in the day, and we happened to be the last visitors, which gave our walk a wondrous and otherworldly quality. We were with each other and the gardens and had a sense of being completely isolated from the city that surrounded us.
A wise friend once told me that our children are a piece of their parents’ hearts, walking around completely exposed. I agree with this sentiment, and that is why, when Jasmine flew off to Greece the very next evening, part of me accompanied her every step of the way.
She is there now and, thanks to modern technology, we have clear conversations, both voice and visual, and send lots of pictures and videos, too. Quantum entanglement, or as Einstein called it, spooky action at a distance.
I am in Greece with Jasmine and also here in Brooklyn with Max and his fiancée Natasha, being wined and dined and walking the enchanting neighborhoods.
During my two weeks here, we ventured to Manhattan only once. We landed at the doors of the Whitney Museum and were ready to explore the rich whipped cream nature of astounding art and its curation. The Whitney special exhibit until October 23 is “Calder: Hypermobility.” As we all walked into the large room filled with Calder sculptures, Natasha leaned over to whisper in my ear, “This reminds me of Robbie Cribbs’ work.” In that moment, I was back on Whidbey, and I began to tell her and my son about the wonderful new moving sculpture on Second Street by Jerry Wennstrom. From the Calder exhibit on the eighth floor, we walked outside, marveling at the view and headed down the stairs to the seventh floor for the exhibit, “Where We Are: Selections from The Whitney’s Collection, 1900-1960.”
The exhibit is organized around five themes: family and community, work, home, the spiritual, and the nation. It was an almost too rich meal of art that breaks your heart and mind wide open. We followed this by going to the sixth floor to view the Whitney Biennial 2017. After that viewing, we all agreed that we could not eat another morsel, so we headed down and out the front doors.
Turning left, you have the lovely option of walking up to the High Line. The High Line is a city park built atop an abandoned elevated railway that winds through the southwestern side of Manhattan 30 feet above street level. It transports and elevates you on every level of your being. There are lovely gardens, walkways, mini forests, and lots of small seating areas interspersed, so that you can just sit or lay back and become a part of this thriving walkway. The High Line also offers some of the most astounding perspectives of the city avenues alongside the complicated and moving geometry of the Manhattan skyline.
The modern architecture next to the elegant older buildings, when viewed from the High Line, seems unapologetic and somehow a perfect puzzle of old and new. We even got our appetite back and stopped for gourmet popsicles made in Brooklyn. I got the cucumber, basil, and lime popsicle; it was a grand way to taste and digest our Manhattan day. We discussed whether to stay in the city for dinner or head back across the bridge to Brooklyn. It was an easy decision to head back to Fort Greene.
I returned home to Langley late last night and am preparing this entry now to send to WLM.
Here, there, and everywhere, leaping from field to field, heart-to-heart and hand-to-hand. Let’s hold these golden moments with reverence and gratitude. There’s no place like home.
Joni Takanikos is grateful to have had a two-week vacation, exploring the worlds within worlds, spending time with children and her granddog Bear. She is also grateful to have a sweet home to return to.
Read the other stories published this week
- Tractors on Parade: John Deere Enthusiasts Converge on Engle Farm
- Preparing for the Fair Days of Summer
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