Tag Archives: Cultured Muse

Famed Ringling Bros. circus closing after more than 100 years

16 Jan

**Sadness! I never got to see the circus. This is completely the end of an era and a great loss. Also a sadness for the conservation center-hope they can find an alternative means of funding or what will happen to the poor elephants there.  Great shout-outs to all the great members of the circus group and all the joy they brought audiences for years. You were seriously a part of the American culture!

“Famed Ringling Bros. circus closing after more than 100 years”

by Tony Marco and Azadeh Ansari via “CNN”

Performers ride elephants during a live perfomance in 2007.

The Ringling Bros. circus is closing down after more than 100 years in operation, according to a press release from Feld Entertainment, which has owned the circus for the last 50 years.

“I have made the difficult business decision that Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey® will hold its final performances in May of this year,” CEO Kenneth Feld said.
High operating costs and the decline of ticket sales “made the circus an unsustainable business for the company,” Feld said.
And after “the transition of the elephants off the road, we saw an even more dramatic drop” in ticket sales, Feld said.  Before taking the final bow, the Ringling Bros., will perform 30 shows across the United States between now and May.
For years, the elephants have been in the spotlight and their dance routines featured prominently in the shows. But due to mounting criticism from animal rights groups, the Ringling Bros. phased out the elephant acts entirely.
Off stage, the Ringling Bros. runs an elephant conservation center which sits on 200 acre of rural land in Florida, between Tampa and Orlando. Created in 1995 by Ringling, the facility focuses on the care and study of Asian elephants — an endangered species that it had used in its shows.


Upcoming Event ~ “Taiwan Fest!”

11 Aug

Hey Folks!  

Heard from the ACSEA (Asian-Canadian Special Events Association) and they are putting on what sound’s like a really cool event in Downtown Toronto and Vancouver! 🙂 

Each year, this organization hosts the annual TAIWANfest, and this year it’s going to be called “Dialogues with Asia” starting with “A Cultural Tango with Hong Kong.”  The event’s purpose is the “engage Torontonians and Vancouverites in a cultural dialogue to better understand Asian cultures.” But I’m sure they’d love for people of all locales to stop buy and participate! Sounds like a great opportunity to learn more about not only Taiwan (an awesome place – most of my students say that it is actually more like old-style, traditional China than even the mainland) but also other countries in the Asian sphere.

You can see the schedule for August 26-28 here and September 3-5 here. Special events include an International Pan Asian Culinary event and “A Cultural Tango with Hong Kong Symphony” Check it out!

Who:  ACSEA (Asian-Canadian Special Events Association)

When: August 26-28, 2016 (in Toronto) &  September 3-5, 2016 (in Vancouver)


Harbourfront Centre
235 Queens Quay W
Toronto, ON M5J 2G8

The Centre / Granville Street / QE Theatre Plaza
Vancouver Playhouse Annex

More Information: Here.

“TAIWANfest returns to Harbourfront Centre and Downtown Vancouver this summer and begins its “Dialogues with Asia” series with “A Cultural Tango with Hong Kong.” One of the great ways to experience the culture is to take part in the Friendship Picnic – a program designed to cultivate new friendships over food. Mark down the dates and get ready to meet someone from Taiwan or Hong Kong. If you’re a little more adventurous, try the Hakka nutritional beverage called Lei-Cha, made from ground up seeds and nuts. For some great stories, check out the full Experience HAKKA! Redefine your understanding of Asian cultures with exhibits and films August 26-28 at Harbourfront Centre and September 3-5 in Downtown Vancouver.”

Music I Love ~ “My Heart Will Go On – Vintage 50’s Version)

9 Aug

Art I Love ~ Wolf Tears

29 Jul

Contrasting Realities in Middle Eastern Art and Culture

28 Mar

Read More

Photographer Travels Around The World To Capture The Beauty Of Doors And Windows

14 Mar

“Photographer Travels Around The World To Capture The Beauty Of Doors And Windows”

by Agata Gri via “Bored Panda”

You may remember a post last year by Andre Vicente Goncalves, a Portuguese computer-scientist-turned-photographer who traveled the world taking pictures of windows that he then compiled into beautiful collages.

Not content to stop at windows, the globe-trotting photographer now brings us a whole new project that focuses on a different subject: doors.

Much like his previous project, his latest project, titled Doors of the World, follows a similar theme by making use of collages to present his beautifully colorful findings.

We often think of doors as something practical, an item necessary to our lives only because of what it does for us. But this project reminds us that doors aren’t just there to be opened and closed – they’re also there to be admired.

If you like these pictures then click here to see some captivating photographs of floors in Barcelona.

More info: andrevicentegoncalves.comFacebook





Windows of the World: Venice


Turkey: Church discovered in world’s biggest underground city in Nevşehir with never-before-seen frescos

24 Feb

“Turkey: Church discovered in world’s biggest underground city in Nevşehir with never-before-seen frescos”

by Matt Atherton via “IBT

Church fresco

An 1,500-year-old underground church has been discovered in Turkey with never-before-seen frescoes depicting Jesus and “bad souls being killed”. The church was found in the world’s largest known underground city in the Cappadocia region of central Turkey.

The frescoes have been described as depicting Jesus rising into the sky – known in Christianity as the Ascension – and the destroying of evil – known as the Last Judgement. The discovery of the church itself – which archaeologists suggest could be more than 1,500 years old – still has secrets to be revealed, as so far only the roof and uppermost part of the walls have been uncovered.

“Only a few of the paintings have been revealed,” said researcher Ali Aydin, who told the Hurriyet Daily News: “There are important paintings in the front part of the church showing the crucifixion of Jesus and his ascension to heaven. There are also frescoes showing the apostles, the saints and other prophets Moses and Elyesa.”

An urban housing project was taking place in the city of Nevşehir, where the church was found. It is part of a huge number of early dwellings, which form the largest known ancient underground city. The underground city itself was discovered in 2014, and around four miles of tunnels have been uncovered. The experts believe people lived here around 5,000 years ago.

Archaeologists have had to pause their excavations, however, as the winter humidity can damage the paintings. However, they have managed to reveal the ceiling of the structure which mainly sits underground, and were fascinated by the huge frescoes which can be found across the inside of the roof and top of the walls.

“We know that such frescoes have so far never been seen in any other church,” said Hasan Ünver, mayor of Nevşehir. “It was built underground and has original frescoes that have survived to this day. This place is even bigger than the other historical churches in Cappadocia.

“It is reported that some of the frescoes here are unique. There are exciting depictions like fish falling from the hand of Jesus Christ, him rising up into the sky, and the bad souls being killed. When the church is completely revealed, Cappadocia could become an even bigger pilgrimage center of Orthodoxy,.”


“Every Woman . . . “

9 Feb

“Every Woman”
by Pamela Redmond Satran

Enough money within her control to move out
And rent a place of her own
even if she never wants to or needs to
Something perfect to wear if the employer
or date of her dreams wants to See Her in an hour

A youth she’s content to leave behind
A past juicy enough that she’s looking forward to
retelling it in her Old Age

A set of screwdrivers,
a cordless drill, and a black lace bra
One friend who always makes her laugh
And one Who lets her cry

A good piece of furniture not previously owned
by anyone else in her Family
Eight matching plates,
wine glasses with stems,
And a recipe for a meal that will make
her guests feel Honored
A feeling of control over her destiny

How to fall in love without losing herself
When to try harder

That she can’t change the length of her calves,
The width of her hips,
or the nature of her parents
That her childhood may not have been perfect
But it’s over

What she would and wouldn’t do for love or more
How to live alone
Even if she doesn’t like it

Whom she can trust,
Whom she can’t,
And why she shouldn’t take it personally

Where to go
Be it to her best friend’s kitchen table
Or a charming inn in the woods
When her soul needs soothing

What she can and can’t accomplish in a day
A month
And a year.

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